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By Lisa Keen
Ted Olson, lead attorney for the lawsuit challenging California’s same-sex marriage ban announced Wednesday that he is asking the 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to lift a stay on a district court ruling that found Proposition 8 unconstitutional.
The request, if granted, would enable same-sex couples to marry immediately.
Olson said he filed a motion last Thursday with the California Supreme Court to schedule oral arguments sooner than September on an issue of standing it has been asked to decide for the 9th Circuit.
He said they filed a motion Wednesday, February 23, to ask that the 9th Circuit’s previous order staying the district court decision be lifted.
“Further delay is intolerable,” said Olson.
“We’re going on almost a year since it was held unconstitutional,” noted Boies, referring to the August 4, 2010, ruling by U.S. District Court Judge Vaughn Walker’s ruling that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional.
Olson said he and co-counsel David Boies are “very gratified by the developments today from the Department of Justice,” but did not make clear whether the request to lift the stay on the California ruling was triggered by the DOJ statement. However, he clearly feels the DOJ announcement enhances the possibility the 9th Circuit might consider lifting the stay.
“These bans are clearly unconstitutional,” said Boies, referring not only to California’s Proposition 8 but similar bans in other states. “We would hope that states would recognize the unconstitutionality of those bans and establish marriage equality without the necessity of litigation state by state….It is now overwhelmingly clear that these discriminatory laws are unconstitutional.”