Resolutions opposing California's gay marriage ban were approved Monday in both houses of the Legislature.

Openly gay Senator Mark Leno, a Democrat from San Francisco, sponsored Senate Resolution 7 (SR7), which passed along party lines by 18-14. The Assembly also approved of Assemblyman Tom Ammiano's similar resolution by 45-27.

Both measures support repeal of Proposition 8, the gay marriage ban, on the grounds that it was adopted illegally. The resolutions support arguments in favor of repeal about to be made this week to the California Supreme Court. Opponents say Proposition 8 is an illegal revision to the state Constitution. Because it stripped away existing rights – minority rights protected by the Constitution – it fundamentally altered the document. Only the Legislature can place such revisions on the ballot, they argue.

“We're talking about a radical revision to our Constitution,” Mark Leno said at a media event. “Do we have a constitutional democracy in California or do we have mob rule, where a majority of Californians can change the Constitution at any time?”

The gay marriage ban was approved by a slim majority (52%) of voters on November 4 at a cost of $83 million and sparked nationwide gay rights protests. It also reversed a May ruling by the state Supreme Court granting gay and lesbian couples the right to marry. In the intervening months of June-to-November, 18,000 gay couples tied the knot in what was dubbed the “summer of love.”

The California Legislature has twice passed gay marriage bills, and both were vetoed by Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. The resolutions, however, do not require his signature.

The resolutions have no force of law; they are a nod to the state Supreme Court in favor of repealing Proposition 8, a question the court will take up on Thursday.

Last week, leaders of the NAACP urged passage of both resolutions.

Gay marriage foes have discounted the resolutions as parlor tricks aimed at grabbing media attention, but Leno disagreed, saying the resolutions add something important to the Proposition 8 conversation.

“This is much bigger than marriage equality,” he said last week after his bill cleared committee. “You don't put rights up to a majority vote or every minority group will be in danger.”