California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said Wednesday that he agrees with a federal judge's ruling that struck down the state's gay marriage ban.

Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker's ruling states that Proposition 8 violates the constitutional rights of gay and lesbian couples who wish to marry. Opponents say they'll appeal the ruling.

Voters approved the measure by a narrow margin on November 4, 2008. The law put an end to gay and lesbian weddings taking place in the state after the California Supreme Court legalized the institution.

Walker's ruling “affirms the full legal protections and safeguards I believe everyone deserves,” Schwarzenegger said in a statement.

“There are strong feelings on both sides of this issue, and I am glad that all viewpoints were respected throughout the proceedings,” he added.

The Republican governor has previously stumbled on the issue of gay rights. For example, last year he signed a bill that sets aside Harvey Milk's May 22 birthday to honor the slain gay rights leader. Only a year earlier he had vetoed the legislation.