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Liberty Counsel Argues Historic Marriage Case at California Supreme Court Tomorrow

March 03, 2008

Tomorrow will be a historically significant occasion as Mathew D. Staver, Dean of Liberty University School of Law and Founder of Liberty Counsel, is scheduled to present oral argument in defense of California’s law that provides marriage as the union between one man and one woman. Liberty Counsel represents the Campaign for California Families (CCF) and will participate in the three-hour oral argument.

The California Supreme Court will be televising the oral arguments, which begin at 9:00 AM PST and end approximately at 12:00 PM PST (12:00 to 3:00 PM EST). The California Channel will be offering a live satellite feed for other networks and TV stations to air. A live webcast will be available on its website at www.calchannel.com. In addition, audio streaming will be made available on the Court’s website at http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/courts/supreme/#cal. Dean Staver will be available for interviews following the Court’s dismissal to report on the status and implications of the case as well as any conclusions that can be made from the presentations of the arguments. Liberty University School of Law will simulcast the arguments in the Supreme Courtroom for interested viewers to watch from 12:00 to 3:00 PM EST.

This case involves a four-year-old dispute over the constitutionality of California’s marriage laws. In February 2004, Liberty Counsel filed suit on behalf of CCF and its executive director, Randy Thomasson, to stop San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The California Supreme Court later ruled that the mayor did not have authority to issue the licenses based upon his personal belief that the marriage laws were unconstitutional. Meanwhile, several same-sex couples and the City and County of San Francisco filed lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of the marriage laws. Those lawsuits and Liberty Counsel’s original action were consolidated and have gone through several court hearings and appeals, until finally reaching the California Supreme Court.

Dean Staver presented oral argument in 2004 before the trial court and again before the California Court of Appeals in 2006, which upheld the marriage laws in a 2-1 decision. Commenting on the upcoming argument, Dean Staver said: “Marriage as one man and one woman predates government and is the foundation of society. To preserve it is essential. To rename or abolish it would be foolish.”