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A leading California gay rights group said today that it won't seek to qualify a ballot initiative to repeal the state's same-sex marriage ban in 2012.

Equality California had previously said it would try to reverse Proposition 8 during next year's presidential election, saying high turnout among young voters could boost its chances of success.

But the group said today it has decided not to pursue what would "inevitably be a very expensive and difficult campaign" to overturn the 2008 voter-approved initiative.

With the ultimate fate of Proposition 8 still tied up in the courts, EQCA announced that instead of launching an initiative qualification drive it will back an outreach campaign to "overcome the psychological, cultural and emotional triggers" that lead to discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals.

EQCA Executive Director Roland Palencia said EQCA's "Breakthrough Conversation" campaign will partner with community, faith-based and minority organizations to "confront major societal barriers that prevent us from securing full and lasting equality, including marriage."

"We share the pain, frustration and discrimination that California same-sex couples and their families experience every day because they are denied the freedom to marry," Palencia said in a statement. "Today, we are recommitting ourselves to doing the hard work of changing hearts and minds to be ready to change that reality should the courts fail to do their job."


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