A three-judge panel from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco upheld a lower court ruling on Tuesday in striking down a voter-approved definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

The 2-1 decision states that the referendum known as Proposition 8 violates the 14th Amendment on equal protection. The ruling might pave the way for the official return of “gay” marriage in California, although supporters of Proposition 8 could appeal to the full 9th Circuit or to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Liberty Counsel Chairman Mathew Staver is disappointed in the decision but says it could have been worse for traditional marriage advocates. He tells us why this decision really only mandates that “gay” couples can use the word marriage and doesn’t change basic laws in the state.

“This ruling has no effect outside of California. It doesn’t affect the rest of the country.”

Staver explains why he believes that the “gay”-rights lobby is probably not completely thrilled with this decision. And he tells us why defenders of Proposition 8 should not appeal this decision to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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