Proposition 8 supporters' dream of defending the measure before the Supreme Court hit a bit of a snag on Thursday.

In denying a permanent stay to his ruling against California's gay marriage ban, Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker said defendants might not have standing to appeal the case before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Walker declared Proposition 8 unconstitutional last Wednesday. His ruling says the ban violates the right of gay men and lesbians to equal protection and due process.

On Thursday, he put his decision on hold until August 18 at 5PM.

“[T]he court denies a stay except for a limited time solely in order to permit the court of appeals to consider the issue in an orderly manner,” the 11-page ruling says.

In that decision, Walker suggests that the coalition of conservative groups that defended the law after state officials refused might not be eligible to pursue an appeal.

“If the state defendants choose not to appeal, proponents may have difficulty demonstrating Article III standing,” Walker wrote.

“When proponents moved to intervene in this action, the court did not address their standing independent of the existing parties. … While the court determined that proponents had a significant protectible interest … in defending Proposition 8, that interest may well be 'plainly insufficient to confer standing.'”

Walker suggested that defendants would need the assistance of state officials to appeal the case because they are the losing parties.

The named defendants in the case, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Attorney General Jerry Brown, however, refused to defend the case. In separate filings, the officials urged Walker to deny a permanent stay of Proposition 8 and have said they would not appeal.

Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Times is reporting that Proposition 8 supporters filed paperwork Thursday with the appeals court to block any gay marriages from taking place while their appeal is heard.