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SF Mayor Rededicates to Same-Sex Marriage

Thursday Feb 15, 2007
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There was a rally on February 12 at San Francisco’s City Hall to celebrate the three-year anniversary of the famed distribution of marriage licenses. One notable attendee was San Francisco’s mayor Gavin Newsom, who is currently dealing with an affair scandal, but who has also rededicated himself to the cause of same-sex marriage.

"For me this is a long battle, but it is one that will be won inevitably. It’s only won through courage and constancy and works. You’ve got to continue to remind people what’s at stake and not give up or deviate from your purpose," he said, at a news conference prior to the rally, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Kate Kendell, executive director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights, told the Chronicle that "there has been no more, in my career, transformative and powerful a series of events as when I first got the call from the mayor’s office that it was his intention to give marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples."

Lawyers from the NCLR had thought about filing a lawsuit before the mayor gave out those licenses, but the NCLR was worried courts wouldn’t be interested.

"I think when the history gets written about all of this, one of the key outcomes of what the mayor did is he prepared the court to be ready -- and, in fact, anxious and interested -- to hear and analyze a lawsuit," Kendell said, according to the Chronicle.

The granting of marriage licenses turned out to backfire for Newsom when the California Supreme Court said he was not legally entitled to give them out. Still, Newsom has never regretted his choice.

"There’s never a wrong time to do something right," the Chronicle quotes Newsom as saying.

Newsom also noted that same-sex marriage is gaining steam on a global basis, becoming legal in Canada, Spain and South Africa.

Newsom’s statements and appearance at this rally come at a timely moment in California’s history. The high court is currently pondering if the constitution allows same-sex couples to marry.

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