Pro-Family Organizations File Brief Defending Constitutionality of California Marriage Laws

Nov 15, 2004

San Francisco, CA - Liberty Counsel filed a brief defending the constitutionality of the California marriage laws on behalf of the Campaign for California Families ("CCF") in the case of Thomasson v. Newsom. CCF is represented by Mathew Staver, President and General Counsel of Liberty Counsel, and Rena Lindevaldsen, Senior Litigation Counsel at Liberty Counsel.

Last February, the California marriage laws came under attack when San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom broke the law and began to arbitrarily issue same-sex marriage licenses. Liberty Counsel filed suit on behalf of CCF against Mayor Newsom. In July, the California Supreme Court ruled that Newsom had no authority to issues marriage licenses to same-sex couples and found such licenses to be null and void. However, several lawsuits filed by same-sex marriage advocates are still pending which challenge the constitutionality of California's marriage laws.

In its brief, Liberty Counsel argues that the California marriage laws are constitutional, and, contrary to the arguments by same-sex couples, do not constitute gender discrimination. Furthermore, Liberty Counsel argues that "sexual orientation" is not a protected class as it is not an immutable characteristic and therefore does not receive heightened protection under the law.

Staver commented, "The definition of marriage is not up for grabs in America. Legislatures and electorates throughout the Unites States have steadfastly maintained the traditional definition of marriage. Pro-family groups across the nation have mobilized and are fighting to protect the sanctity of marriage as the union of one man and one woman. The people of California voted overwhelmingly to protect marriage as one man and one woman. We will not allow their voices to be stifled by endless court battles which seek to overthrow common sense and the will of the people."