The Supreme Court’s decision to dismiss the Proposition 8 appeal for lack of jurisdiction leaves the legal status of Proposition 8 a bit ambiguous. It is important to note that the appeals have been dismissed, not the whole case. The Ninth Circuit’s opinion is vacated. But the trial was valid. After the trial, the district court sitting in San Francisco held that Proposition 8 was unconstitutional. That result now stands as though no appeal was ever taken. So, as of right now, as a matter of law, Proposition 8 is unconstitutional and unenforceable by the state of California, which means that same-sex marriages should be able to resume.
However, there will almost certainly be more litigation over this, and we will have to wait to hear what the state of California will actually do. But as the result stands right now, this is a victory for same-sex couples in California. If no further orders are entered, marriages of same-sex couples will have to resume in California fairly soon.
[Update: It is by no means a foregone conclusion that Proposition 8 is dead. Here is a good explanation of why.]
[Update: Governor Brown has ordered that marriage licenses be issued as soon as the Ninth Circuit lifts the stay, which will likely be today or tomorrow. Here is his statement: “After years of struggle, the U.S. Supreme Court today has made same-sex marriage a reality in California. In light of the decision, I have directed the California Department of Public Health to advise the state’s counties that they must begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples in California as soon as the Ninth Circuit confirms the stay is lifted.”]