California's Supreme Court rejected Monday a request to halt same-sex marriages pending a ruling on whether to re-impose a ban on gay weddings in the western US state.
Anti gay wedding group ProtectMarriage.com sought the suspension after a landmark judgement last month by the federal US Supreme Court, which allowed same-sex unions to resume five years after a referendum initiative banned them.
But California's top court rejected the bid to re-instate so-called Proposition 8, or Prop 8, a ban on same-sex marriages passed by a slim majority of California voters in 2008.
"The CA Supreme Court has denied the Prop 8 proponents' request to halt gay marriages in CA," said California attorney general Kamala Harris on her Twitter feed.
The nation's top court ruled on June 26 that supporters of Prop 8 lacked the proper standing to appeal a lower-court judgment that declared the measure unconstitutional.
The ruling essentially allowed the original federal court ruling to stand, striking down Prop 8.
In theory the Ninth Circuit court in San Francisco should have waited for at least 25 days to enforce the ruling, but it lifted the ban two days later, to jubilation from gay couples who flocked to get married within hours.
Supporters of Prop 8 have vowed to pursue their efforts to have the ban -- backed by 52 percent of Californians five years ago, with 48 percent against -- re-enforced.
ProtectMarriage.com has asked California's top court to rule on its contention that a federal judge's injunction against the marriage ban did not apply statewide.
The court is not expected to rule on the group's petition until August at the earliest, according to the Los Angeles Times newspaper.
ProtectMarriage.com, announcing its petition to the California Supreme Court on its website, said it sought "to restore the enforcement of the state's constitutional amendment limiting marriage to a man and a woman."
"The man-woman definition of marriage, as passed by the voters, is still a valid part of our state constitution," said Andrew Pugno, general counsel for Proposition 8's official proponents.
"We are asking California's Supreme Court to restore the rule of law and the public's confidence in the integrity of the initiative process."
ProtectMarriage.com did not immediately react after the Supreme Court rejected its petition.