Bishops Lament Court Overturn of California Vote on Marriage

Cardinal-designate Dolan Calls Ruling a Grave Injustice

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WASHINGTON, D.C., FEB. 8, 2012 ( The president of the U.S. bishops’ conference says his nation «deserves better» than a court decision in California that has deemed unconstitutional the citizens’ vote to defend marriage 

Californians’ approval of Proposition 8, which declared marriage to be between a man and a woman, has been declared unconstitutional by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

In the latest installment of the long-running battle over same-sex marriage in California, the court ruled 2-1 that the overturning of the November 2008 referendum by a 9th circuit court in 2010 was correct.

There was controversy over the 2010 decision due to the fact that the judge, Vaughn Walker, was himself a homosexual, but the appeals court declared that there was no evidence that he was biased.

The decision is now expected to be appealed to the Supreme Court.

«Today’s court ruling is a grave injustice, ignoring the reality that marriage is the union of one man and one woman,» Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan of New York said in a press release issued Tuesday by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). The New York archbishop is the president of the episcopal conference.

«The Constitution of the United States most assuredly does not forbid the protection of the perennial meaning of marriage, one of the cornerstones of society. The people of California deserve better. Our nation deserves better. Marriage deserves better,» he declared.

Bishop Wilkerson, president of the California Catholic Conference, said, «We are disappointed by the ruling today by a panel of the 9th Circuit that would invalidate the action taken by the people of California.»

«Marriage between one man and one woman has been — and always will be — the most basic building block of the family and of our society,» he said.

«In the end, through sound legal reasoning, we believe the court will see this as well and uphold the will of the voters as expressed in Proposition 8,» Bishop Wilkerson concluded. «We continue to pray for that positive outcome.»

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