California GOP gubernatorial candidate
Meg Whitman criticized Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Attorney
Jerry Brown, her Democratic rival for governor, for not defending the
state's gay marriage ban, known as Proposition 8, the San
Francisco Chronicle reported.
In remarks made hours before speaking
at the opening of the state's three-day GOP convention in San Diego,
Whitman made it clear that as governor she would have handled the
She said the men have an obligation to
defend the Constitution and to “enable the judicial process to go
“So if I was governor, I would give
that ruling standing to be able to appeal to the circuit court,”
she said Friday.
Whitman, the former CEO of eBay, was
referring to a recent federal judge's ruling that struck down
Proposition 8 as unconstitutional. An appeals court put the ruling
on hold last week as proponents attempt to overturn the ruling.
Protect Marriage, the sponsor of the
measure, jumped in to defend the law after Schwarzenegger and Brown,
the named defendants, declined to do so. The Church of Jesus Christ
of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons), the California Catholic
Conference and various evangelical churches came together to form
Protect Marriage after the California Supreme Court legalized gay
marriage. Voters narrowly approved the measure in November, 2008.
District Judge Vaughn Walker concluded
that as a third party to the case, the group would need to prove
standing in order to pursue an appeal. The Ninth Circuit Court of
Appeals is scheduled to hear oral arguments in December.
Whitman has previously said she does
not support giving gay men and lesbians the right to marry.
Whitman and Brown have been
neck-and-neck since September in their pursuit to take over the reins
from outgoing Schwarzenegger. According to the latest Rasmussen
poll, Brown leads with a slim 2 points.