The California Supreme Court, without comment, on Monday declined a request to immediately block the issuance of marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples as it considers a broader request to reinstate Proposition 8, considered unlikely by most legal experts.

Last week, Protect Marriage, the group that sponsored the 2008 voter-approved constitutional amendment which defined marriage as a heterosexual union, asked the state's highest court to reinstate the ban, arguing that Democratic Governor Jerry Brown did not have the authority to end enforcement of Proposition 8.

Protect Marriage lawyer Austin Nimocks vowed in a statement to continue fighting for the ban.

“Although we would have preferred for the California Supreme Court to issue a stay so that the state's marriage amendment would be respected sooner rather than later, the proponents of Proposition 8 will continue to urge the court to uphold the rule of law,” he said.

Proposition 8 tumbled after the Supreme Court ruled that interveners lacked standing to defend the law, leaving in place a 2010 circuit court ruling declaring it unconstitutional.

Within days after the Supreme Court ruled, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals lifted its stay in the ruling, allowing same-sex marriages to resume in California.

However, Protect Marriage argues that a provision in the California Constitution prohibits state officials from refusing to enforce a law unless it has been deemed unconstitutional by an appellate court.

Protect Marriage also argues that the 2010 ruling only applies to the two counties where plaintiffs live, not the entire state.

On June 28, Brown ordered clerks in all 58 counties to resume issuing marriage license to gay couples.