Chief US District Judge Vaughn Walker
will hear closing arguments in the federal gay marriage trial on June
16, Reuters reported.
Saying he wanted to review the evidence
before listening to closing arguments, Walker cleared out his San
Francisco courtroom in January after hearing two-and-a-half weeks'
worth of testimony without issuing a ruling.
The federal trial is the first to
consider the constitutionality of a gay marriage ban. Lawyers
opposed to Proposition 8, California's gay marriage ban approved by
voters in 2008, argued that proponents had approved the measure out
of animus towards gay men and lesbians, stripping such couples of
their constitutional rights.
Proponents of the law say voters
approved the measure because they believe allowing gay men and
lesbians to marry would hurt children, an argument advanced by the
campaign to approve Proposition 8.
The case took a prolonged detour when
pro-gay marriage groups challenged a ruling to surrender documents
related to the Proposition 8 campaign.
The American Civil Liberties Union
(ACLU) and Equality California, the state's largest gay advocate and
the lead group behind the campaign against the gay marriage ban,
unsuccessfully appealed the ruling. They had argued that the
documents are confidential internal communications protected by the
First Amendment as political speech.
The groups agreed Wednesday to comply,
ending the legal stalemate.
The legal team of Ted Olson and David
Boies are representing a gay couple and a lesbian couple who have
been denied the right to marry in California because of Proposition