In a brief filed Thursday before the Supreme Court, opponents of California's Proposition 8 argued for a constitutional right to marry for gay and lesbian couples.

Proposition 8 is the 2008 voter-approved constitutional amendment which put an end to the weddings of gay couples taking place in the state after the California Supreme Court struck down the state's law excluding gay couples from marriage.

The Supreme Court will next month hear a constitutional challenge to the law brought by two gay couples who wish to marry but cannot because of Proposition 8.

The case, Perry v. Hollingsworth, is being argued by lawyers Ted Olson and David Boies.

“Because of their sexual orientation – a characteristic with which they were born and which they cannot change – plaintiffs and hundreds of thousands of gay men and lesbians in California and across the country are being excluded from one of life's most precious relationships …,” Olson and Boies write in a brief filed in the case on Thursday. “This badge of inferiority, separateness, and inequality must be extinguished. When it is, America will be closer to fulfilling the aspirations of all its citizens.”

“The unmistakable purpose and effect of Proposition 8 is to stigmatize gay men and lesbians – and them alone – and enshrine in California's Constitution that they are 'unequal to everyone else.'”

(Read the entire brief at's website.)

Oral arguments in the case will heard on March 26 and the Supreme Court is expected to hand down a ruling in June.