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Fundamental Right to Marry the Person of One\'s Choice Protected by Equal Protection Clause, Says CAC Brief in California Marriage Equality Case

December 14, 2010

CAC Chief Counsel Elizabeth Wydra: “The Fourteenth Amendment was designed to destroy discriminatory traditions that deny persons equal rights under the law, not to perpetuate them in the name of the Constitution.”

Washington, DC – Today, Constitutional Accountability Center filed a “friend of the court” brief in the historic case of Perry v. Schwarzenegger in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, demonstrating that the text and history of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution compel the court to affirm U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker’s ruling that California’s Proposition 8, which denies the right of marriage to partners of the same sex, is unconstitutional.

Read CAC's brief here: http://theusconstitution.org/cases/briefs/perry-v-schwarzenegger/9th-circuit-amicus-brief-perry-v-schwarzenegger

"The text and history of the Fourteenth Amendment guarantee equality under the law and equality of rights for all persons – without exception,” said Elizabeth Wydra, Constitutional Accountability Center Chief Counsel. Rejecting Proposition 8 supporters’ argument that marriage has traditionally been defined as between a man and a woman, Wydra noted, “The Fourteenth Amendment was designed to destroy discriminatory traditions that deny persons equal rights under the law, not perpetuate them in the name of the Constitution.”

David Gans, Director of CAC's Human Rights, Civil Rights, and Citizenship Program said, “The framers of the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause recognized the right to marry the person of one’s choosing as a protected civil right inherent in liberty and freedom. By denying same-sex couples the right to marry, Proposition 8 violates this original meaning and the clear text of the Fourteenth Amendment,” Gans said.

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Resources:

CAC’s brief amicus curiae in Perry v. Schwarzenegger: http://theusconstitution.org/cases/briefs/perry-v-schwarzenegger/9th-circuit-amicus-brief-perry-v-schwarzenegger

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Constitutional Accountability Center (www.theusconstitution.org) is a think tank, public interest law firm, and action center dedicated to fulfilling the progressive promise of the Constitution\'s text and history.

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