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California Governor Signs Bill Recognizing Legal Gay Marriage

— Gov. Jerry Brown has signed legislation replacing language in state law that defines marriage as "between a man and a woman."

Senate Bill 1306 takes effect Jan. 1, reflecting the legality of gay marriage after a decade of litigation. Brown announced the signing Monday.

The law also removes limits on recognizing same-sex marriages performed out of state and replaces family code references to husband and wife with the word spouse.

The language was enacted after voters approved Proposition 22 in 2000. The initiative was struck down by the California Supreme Court in 2008, prompting voters to amend the constitution and ban gay marriage.

Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a lower court's decision ruling the ban unconstitutional. Democratic Sen. Mark Leno of San Francisco says his bill recognizes all married couples equally.

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