Lawyers arguing in favor of California's gay marriage ban have asked a federal judge to revoke state recognition of 18,000 gay marriages, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

The request was made by lawyers representing, the primary sponsor of Proposition 8, California's gay marriage ban approved by voters in November 2008, in the first federal trial to consider the constitutionality of a gay marriage ban. Passage of the measure trumped a state Supreme Court ruling legalizing gay marriage in the state. About 18,000 gay and lesbian couples wed during the May-to-November window when the institution was legal.

Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker will hear closing arguments in a San Francisco courtroom Wednesday. The hearing, which is scheduled to last the whole day, begins at 10AM.

In their final written filing submitted Tuesday, backers of Proposition 8 asked Walker to revoke state recognition of all gay marriages, saying such an order would honor “the expressed will of the people.”

The trial concluded after two-and-a-half weeks' worth of testimony in January, but Walker said he wanted to review the evidence before listening to closing arguments.

Last week, Walker asked both legal teams to answer remaining questions.

During the trial, lawyers opposed to Proposition 8 argued that proponents had approved the measure out of animus towards gay men and lesbians, stripping such couples of their constitutional rights.

But backers of the gay ban argued Tuesday that “moral disapproval of homosexual conduct is not tantamount to animus, bigotry or discrimination.”

“On the contrary,” said Charles Cooper, chief counsel for, “religions that condemn homosexual conduct also teach love of gays and lesbians.”

On Friday, Walker denied a motion to strike from evidence emails from religious groups involved in the Yes on 8 campaign, primarily members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons) and the Roman Catholic church. Mormon officials continue to deny they directly supported passage of the measure.

Walker could decide to overturn the gay marriage ban and allow gay couples to begin marrying in California immediately. But such a ruling would likely be quickly appealed to the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. In fact, both parties have suggested the trial is the opening act in a road show headed to the Supreme Court.