Commentary: California lawyer Pugno ready for Prop 8 fight

One of the top legal minds opposing gay marriage in California is an estate planner from Folsom.

Andrew Pugno will sit next to Kenneth Starr – the same Kenneth Starr who prosecuted President Bill Clinton – when California's Supreme Court considers striking down Proposition 8.

The voter-approved initiative restricting marriage to heterosexual couples is being challenged Thursday in a highly anticipated hearing in San Francisco.

Pugno (pronounced Poon-Yo) is co-counsel to Starr, who will be arguing that Proposition 8 is the will of the people and should be upheld. Pugno will not address the justices, but that hardly matters.

His voice has been a significant weapon in the fight to preserve marriage as a bond between a man and a woman.

Pugno was general counsel for the Yes on Prop. 8 campaign. He has been fighting for traditional marriage since graduating from UC Davis and becoming a disciple of the late Pete Knight.

A state senator, Knight authored Proposition 22, which also prevented same-sex marriage. That measure was approved by state voters in 2000 and invalidated last May by the state Supreme Court – the same decision Proposition 8 overturned.

To read the complete column, visit www.sacbee.com.

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