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Prop 8 Supporters, Opponents Prepare for Ruling

Both supporters and opponents of gay marriage are poised to appeal a district judge's expected ruling today on whether California's Proposition 8, which bans same-sex marriage, is constitutional.

Citing the "harms that would flow from another purported window of same-sex marriage in California," lawyers for the proposition's defense on Tuesday night filed a request for the judge to issue a stay of his ruling if he decides the measure is unconstitutional, the San Jose Mercury News reports. The lawyers argued that they are confident they could win the case on appeal and wish to honor the will of the voters in the meantime, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker, who is presiding over the case, has already blocked any gay marriages from taking place while court proceedings are underway because of the legal uncertainty on the issue.

Walker's ruling in the landmark case will not impact the approximately 18,000 same-sex couples who were legally married in 2008. The California Supreme Court legalized gay marriage in May of 2008, but voters outlawed it just months later with the approval of Prop. 8.

Meanwhile, opponents of Prop. 8 are planning rallies across the state, and in some other states as well, in anticipation of the decision.

Walker is expected to release his ruling sometime between 1 and 3 p.m. Pacific Time. Once his decision is appealed, it would go to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and then possibly the Supreme Court.

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