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Attorneys in Same-Sex Marriage Ban File Briefs

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SAN FRANCISCO – Attorneys in the battle over California’s same-sex marriage ban filed legal papers in federal court Friday on the California Supreme Court’s ruling that the proposition’s supporters could defend the measure in court.

The filings by supporters and opponents of the Proposition 8 comes after the California Supreme Court ruled last month that sponsors of the ballot initiative had the right to defend the measure in court even though the governor and attorney general have refused to do so.

Following the Nov. 17 ruling, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel in San Francisco asked both sides to file legal papers on the ruling and how it would impact the case.

In the filings Friday, lawyers for the coalition of religious and conservative groups who successfully campaigned for passage of the proposition, agreed with the ruling, while opponents disagreed, and said the higher court should dismiss the appeal.

Opponents of Proposition 8, including attorneys for Kristin Perry and Sandra Stier, a lesbian couple from Berkeley, said permitting backers of the proposition to appeal the ruling would disregard precedent, and that the higher court should dismiss the appeal.

If the panel accepts the Supreme Court’s interpretation, it would clear the way for the appeals court to consider the merits of an appeal challenging a lower court ruling that overturned the ban.

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