It's About Time, Marriage Defenders Say

Susan Jones | July 7, 2008 | 8:04pm EDT
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( - Conservative groups are praising the California Supreme Court for finally taking a stand against anarchy by stopping San Francisco from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

In a unanimous ruling on Thursday, the court ordered San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom to stop what he's been doing since Feb. 12.

"While it is disappointing, to say the least, that it has taken a month for this chaos to be stopped, the court's order is without question a victory for the rule of law and the role of family in American life," said Focus on the Family Chairman Dr. James Dobson.

Dobson said he hopes the court's decision will show elected officials that they cannot flout state law in pursuit of their "politically correct agendas."

He also said the situation in San Francisco has shown the American people why a constitutional amendment is needed to protect the definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

The Family Research Council, which filed a friend of the court brief in the case, said it will be interesting to see if Mayor Newsom abides by the court ruling, given his previous contempt for the rule of law.

"Today's ruling reinforces the notion that regardless of his personal beliefs, one rogue mayor does not have the authority to ignore the will of the California people, or the constitution he swore to defend," said FRC President Tony Perkins.

The California Supreme Court said it will hear oral arguments in late May or early June on whether the San Francisco Mayor can ignore a state law he considers unconstitutional. The court will not decide the larger issue -- whether state law banning same-sex "marriage" is constitutional or not.

A ruling will come within 90 days of the oral arguments, press reports said.

Mayor Newsom, addressing a crowd at City Hall, said he looks forward to making a strong case in front of the California Supreme Court.

"[W]e have an obligation under the equal protection clause of the Constitution to do what's right -- treat people fairly, with dignity on an equal basis regardless of sexual orientation," he said.

Press reports say 4,161 same-sex couples have been "married" in defiance of state law since San Francisco started allowing them to do so last month.

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