California Lieutenant Governor Gavin
Newsom will headline a gay rights fundraiser in Utah on Saturday.
The 43-year-old Newsom will speak at
Equality Utah's 10th annual Allies Dinner at the Calvin L.
Rampton Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City. Tickets
are $100, and proceeds benefit Equality Utah, the state's largest
gay rights group.
In 2003, then-San Francisco Mayor
Newsom ordered city hall clerks to issue marriage licenses to gay and
lesbian couples in violation of state law. Several thousand gay
couples were married during the “winter of love,” but eventually
the California Supreme Court ordered the city to stop and invalidated
all the marriages.
The city, along with gay groups and
individuals, sued the State of California. The court sided with
Newsom, and in May of 2008 struck down the 2000 law that banned gay
Opponents of marriage equality fought
back with Proposition 8, a constitutional amendment that when
approved by voters in 2008 overturned the state Supreme Court's
decision. Proposition 8 backers have appealed a federal district
court ruling declaring the ban unconstitutional.
Newsom's commitment to gay marriage and
the gay community never wavered.
“[I]f you believe fundamentally that
people should have rights that are of the same sex, but you're not
willing to extend them equal rights, then what is it about that point
of view that distinguishes it from your point of view about civil
rights for people based on race or ethnicity? What is inherently
more significant about someone and their rights that happens to be of
a different race that should not be extended equally to someone who
may have a different sexual orientation?” Newsom said in 2008 while
attending the Democratic National Convention.