Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker will rule Thursday on whether to keep a stay in place as a decision overturning California's gay marriage ban is appealed.

Proposition 8 was narrowly approved by voters in 2008. It put an end to the gay weddings taking place in the state after the California Supreme Court legalized gay marriage only five months earlier.

Walker released his 138-page ruling last Wednesday after conducting a 13-day trial in a San Francisco courtroom in January. He found the ban violated the constitutional rights of gay and lesbian couples who wish to marry in California.

The decision was placed on hold temporarily and the prohibition remains. Walker heard arguments on Friday on whether to allow gay marriages to proceed as the case is being appealed.

In filings with the court, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Attorney General Jerry Brown, and attorneys representing the plaintiffs – two gay couples – urged Walker to lift the stay.

Allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry “is consistent with California's long history of treating all people and their relationships with equal dignity and respect,” Schwarzenegger said in his filing.

Proponents of Prop 8 have argued that lifting the ban would put gay marriages taking place during the appeal process “under a cloud of uncertainty.”

The decision is expected to be announced between 9AM and 12PM PT.