SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal appeals court judge is refusing to recuse himself from considering the constitutionality of California's gay marriage ban,
Backers of Proposition 8 had asked Judge Stephen Reinhardt of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to remove himself from the three-judge panel considering the appeal next week.
Reinhardt denied the request in a brief order Thursday, saying he will impartially decide the case.
The backers question Reinhardt's impartiality because he is married to lawyer Ramona Ripston, who heads the American Civil Liberties Union's Southern California office. The ACLU is an outspoken opponent of Proposition 8.
Prop 8 backers are asking the panel to overturn a lower court decision that struck down the California ballot measure.
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