Proposition 8 Remains During Appeal On Gay Marriage Decision

03/23/2011 03:52 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

SAN FRANCISCO -- A federal appeals court has refused to allow gay marriages to take place in California while it considers the constitutionality of the state's ban.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals made the ruling Wednesday in San Francisco.

California Attorney General Kamala Harris had joined gay marriage proponents in urging the appeals court to lift a stay that had been placed a lower court ruling to strike down Proposition 8.

Lawyers for two same-sex California couples argued that gays and lesbians are being hurt each day the ban remains in effect.

The lawyers sought again to lift the stay after the California Supreme Court recently said it would take at least until the end of the year to consider a legal question asked by the appeals court in the case.