California voters have passed a constitutional amendment outlawing same-sex marriage, the Associated Press reported Wednesday. NBC News has yet to confirm the passage of this amendment, which would overturn a court ruling that gave gay couples the right to wed just months ago. The passage of Proposition 8 represents a crushing political defeat for gay-rights activists, who had hoped public opinion on the contentious issue had shifted enough to help them defeat the measure.
It also represents a personal loss for the thousands of couples from California and others states who got married in the brief window when they could. Legal experts said courts will have to resolve whether their unions still are valid. California joins Arizona and Florida, where voters also approved amendments banning gay marriage. Gay-rights forces also suffered a loss in Arkansas, where voters approved a measure banning unmarried couples from serving as adoptive or foster parents. Supporters made clear that gays and lesbians were their main target.
This is really, really disappointing. I think that the dishonest ads Prop 8 ran about children and using Barack Obama's face helped them immeasurably at the end, because it was running behind in the polls as late as the weekend. I fully expect that the proposition, like Prop 22 in 2000 will be challenged in court and meet a similar fate that Prop 22 did.