Proposition 8 lawyer: 'No good reason' for gay marriage ban

Proposition 8 lawyer: 'No good reason' for gay marriage ban
© Francis Rivera

A lawyer involved in California’s landmark Proposition 8 same-sex marriage ballot case said on Sunday that states did not have any legitimate reason to prohibit same-sex marriages.

Ted Olson argued that the Supreme Court was correct in legalizing the practice nationwide.

“The states could not come up with any good reason to prohibit same-sex marriage,” Olson told host Chris Wallace on “Fox News Sunday.”


“You can’t explain something with, ‘that’s the way we’ve always done it,’” he said of states’ arguments for traditional marriage.

“That’s like saying that we should keep having separate schools as it is tradition,” Olson added, citing America’s past racial segregation of black and white students.

Olson, a longtime advocate for marriage equality, also said he is deeply moved by Friday’s decision.

“It is very important to my heart,” Olson said. “It is the right of a person to marry who they are most devoted to.”

Olson additionally urged critics of Friday’s decision to remember that the push for same-sex marriage is a social rather than legal one.

“This is not something the Supreme Court made up,” he said of Obergefell v. Hodges and its outcome.


Olson added that the Supreme Court had traditionally protected against discrimination without waiting for voters to do so.

He cited segregation and bans on interracial marriage as examples of the nation’s highest court guarding civil rights when voters would not do so themselves.

“We do not wait to put civil rights to a vote,” Olson said. “It was right not to wait now.”

Friday’s historic 5-4 decision ensures that states must recognize all same-sex marriages.

It justifies such protections under the 14th Amendment’s equal protections clause.