California Proposition 8

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Proposition 8 (or the California Marriage Protection Act) was a ballot proposition and constitutional amendment passed in the November 2008, state elections. The Act stated under the Declaration of Rights, to the California Constitution that "only marriage between a man and a women is valid or recognized in California."[1]
Fresno Prop 8.png

Proposition 8 overturned the California Supreme Court's ruling that same sex couples have the right to marry, It did not change domestic partnerships, or same sex marriages that occurred before November 5, 2008.

Supporters of the amendment insisted that heterosexual marriage was "an essential institutuion of society," and that "leaving the constitution unchanged would teach our kids that marriage is okay." Opposers on the other hand argue that "the freedom to marry is fundamental to our society," that the CA constitution "should guarantee the same freedom and rights to everyone."[2]

The campaigns for and against Proposition 8, raised $39.9 million and 43.4 million respectively. To date, it was the highest-funded campaign on any state ballot, exceeding other campaigns in the country except for the presidential election. Many lawsuits were filed after the California Supreme Court challenged Prop 8.[3]

Supporters of Proposition 8

    Yes on 8.png


  • U.S Senator John McCain, supported the constitutional amendment, as well as Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich. Both men felt that same sex marriages would be going against the will of the people.[5]

Religious Organizations

  • The Roman Catholic Church, the Knights of Columbus, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, The First Presidency Church strongly supported Proposition 8.[6]
  • The First Presidency Church, wrote in a letter to all church members to "do all you can to support the proposed constitutional amendment by donating your means and times."
  • The Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America
  • Eastern Orthodox Church
  • American Family Association
  • Focus on the Family
  • National Organization for Marriage [7]

Biblical passages referenced in support of Proposition 8:

  • Genesis 2:24
  • Matthew 19:5
  • Mark 10:7[8]


Grossmont Union High School District in San Diego County, California, endorsed Prop 8. [9]

Opposers of Proposition 8

  • "Equality for All".
    No on 8.png


  • San Francisco Mayor, Gavin Newsom
  • President Barack Obama stated "he personally considered marriage to be between a man and woman, and supported civil unions that confer comparable rights rather than gay marriage, he opposed divisive and discriminatory efforts to amend the California Constitution..the U.S constitution or those of other states."[10]
  • Vice President Joseph Biden
  • Republican California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger
  • U.S House Speaker, California Representative, Nancy Pelosi
  • U.S Senator, Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer[11]

Religious organizations

  • All six Episcopal diocesan bishops in California jointly issued a statement opposing Proposition 8 on September 10, 2008.[12]
  • The Board of Rabbis of Southern California, voted to oppose Proposition 8. The Jewish Mosaic, the American Jewish Committee, Progressive Jewish Alliance, National Council of Jewish Women, and the Anti-Defamation League. The legislative ministry of the Unitarian Universalists.

Political/Social Organization

  • The League of Women Voters of California
  • Amnesty International
  • The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
  • Google
  • Apple Inc
  • Biotech


  • The Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education voted unanimously for a resolution to oppose Proposition 8.
  • The California Teachers Association donated one million dollars to fight Proposition 8.
  • Chancellor Robert Birgeneau of UC Berkeley urged a vote against the measure, claiming a likely threat to California's academic competitiveness if Proposition 8 is passed.


  •  Los Angeles Times
  • The San Francisco Chronicle
  • The Bakersfield Californian.


Judge Vaughn Walker overturned Prop. 8, August 4, 2010 in Perry v. Schwarzenegger. It was a great win for gay rights activists. [13]


  1. "Propositions that are on the November 4, 2008 General Election Ballot", California Secretary of State
  2. "California General Election Tuesday November 4th Voter Information Guide". Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  3. Egelko, Bob; Bulwa, Demian (August 4, 2010). "Judge strikes down ban on same-sex marriage". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved August 4, 2010.
  4. "". Retrieved 2008-07-07.
  5. Gingrich, Newt. "Stop Imperial Judges...Support Proposition 8". Newt Gingrich. Retrieved 2008-10-01.
  6. "A Statement of the Catholic Bishops of California in Support of Proposition 8". California Catholic Conference. Retrieved 2009-11-27.
  7. "California and Same-Sex Marriage". Retrieved 2008-09-05.
  8. Jackson Jr., B. H. (2010, August 8). Same-sex will Hurt Families, Society. Retrieved August 8, 2010, from
  9. "Resolution for the Endorsement of Proposition 8 – The California Marriage Protection Act" (PDF). Grossmont Union High School District. 2008-07-31. Retrieved 2008-10-13.
  10. Obama, Barack (2006-06-07). "Obama Statement on Vote Against Constitutional Amendment to Ban Gay Marriage". Senate. Retrieved 2008-10-13
  11. "Who Opposes Prop 8?". No On 8, Equality for All. Retrieved 2008-10-30.
  12. "CA Council of Churches Condemn Court Decision". CA Council of Churches. 2009-05-26. Retrieved 2009-05-26.
  13. Egelko, Bob; Bulwa, Demian (August 4, 2010). "Judge strikes down ban on same-sex marriage". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved August 4, 2010.

See Also

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