Prop 8 decision hours away: How broad/how narrow?

August 4, 2010 at 11:00 am 246 comments

by Brian Leubitz

Well, today is the day. Sometime this afternoon, we’ll get our decision in what will go down as one of the most anticipated decisions around these parts since…well…last year when the California Supreme Court upheld Prop 8 but allowed the existing marriages to survive. In many ways, these are amazing days to be alive. No matter which way Judge Walker goes, this is history in the making. It’s a small curve in the arc of history bending towards justice (hopefully more obviously, but perhaps only taking the long view.)

So, with that as background, what are we looking for today? How do we win? How do we lose? And what defines a win? Well, I said yesterday that I’m optimistic, but there’s more than one way to skin the cat here. So, let’s just go through them, and I’m sure to miss something, so be sure to throw all my mistakes in my face in the comments. Let’s start with the downers.

  1. LOSE – Prop 8 is a permissible act of the people acting legislatively.
    Well, I’m not sure how much I need to explain this one, but it’s the worst case scenario for us.  In this situation, Judge Walker would be saying that the people, acting as the state’s legislature, had a “legitimate” interest (any interest really) in regulating against marriage equality, and that Prop 8 was rationally related to that interest.  This is the so-called “rational basis” test.  Now, the Defense of Marriage Act recently failed that test, but that doesn’t mean Prop 8 couldn’t pass.
    Of course, this doesn’t mean the case is over, just that we are on hold as we move forward through the system
  2. Win – The implementation of Prop 8 is unconstitutional.
    This is how we win, without getting everything we really want. This would clearly be a win for our community in the state of California, but would provide relatively little precedent value for other states. The basic rationale here would be that by allowing the 18,000 couples to be married, and not future couples, the state has violated the equal protection of those couples who were not able to wed. This rationale was suggested in a couple of the amicus briefs filed on behalf of the plaintiffs. It could be seen as something of a middle ground, but let’s be honest, it will not satisfy anybody who opposes marriage equality. And it further muddies the underlying issues when what we really need is clarity. Could it happen? Yes, it very well might. But this rationale would be a lame attempt at Solomonic baby-splitting that would present more questions to be answered by other courts.
  3. WIN – Prop 8 is a violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment and/or the Due Process Clause
    This would be our ultimate victory, and really, what Olson and Boies are going for in this case. As I presented above, there are two possible rationales, and I’ll discuss those below. But skipping over the logic, the net result would likely be the complete nullification of Prop 8. However, Judge Walker is likely to issue a stay pending appeal, especially if he overturns Prop 8. In other words, don’t make wedding plans just yet.

I shouldn’t quite leave that logic of our win hanging in the breeze quite so much, so I’ll pull a quote from Loving v Virginia to show you the Supreme Court’s logic in that case.

Marriage is one of the “basic civil rights of man,” fundamental to our very existence and survival…. To deny this fundamental freedom on so unsupportable a basis as the racial classifications embodied in these statutes, classifications so directly subversive of the principle of equality at the heart of the Fourteenth Amendment, is surely to deprive all the State’s citizens of liberty without due process of law. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the freedom of choice to marry not be restricted by invidious racial discrimination. Under our Constitution, the freedom to marry, or not marry, a person of another race resides with the individual and cannot be infringed by the State.

Loving is from an era when the Due Process Clause, especially substantive due process, was a bit more in vogue in the law. If you’ve read much of the history of the era, you’ll know that the substantive due process clause was used to strike down restrictions on birth control in Griswold v Conn, and, ultimately, protected the right of women to choose in Roe v. Wade. Though in recent history conservatives have made the infamous (and incorrectly decided) Dred Scott case the poster boy for substantive due process, its effects (as correctly applied) were to push America in the direction of tolerance.

I’ll not give you the whole Wikipedia version of substantive due process, but long story short, it protects fundamental rights generally. But, as I said, it has fallen out of favor of late, and courts generally try to rely on the more stable equal protection clauses of the Constitution to provide a more concrete footing for their legal argument. As we have discussed in these virtual pages on a number of occasions, there are three levels of equal protection scrutiny, rational basis, intermediate, and strict scrutiny. I went over those tests back in January, so I won’t rehash all of that now. But, I will say that a strict scrutiny of Prop 8 would hold ramifications for future challenges of other laws. We would be able to more forcefully argue the case that states must show a compelling interest to discriminate based upon orientation, and that would mean a lot more in the way of wins for our side.

But, for now, this is just speculation. The real thing is just around the corner.

Entry filed under: Background, Trial analysis.

Prop 8 trial pre-decision round-up BREAKING: Prop 8 ruled unconstitutional

246 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Lesbians Love Boies  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:01 am

    scribing

    Reply
    • 2. ĶĭŗîļĺęΧҲΪ  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:01 am

      Let’s ponder away

      Reply
      • 3. l8r_g8r  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:03 am

        Yup.

        Reply
      • 4. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:19 am

        Uh. huh.

        Reply
    • 5. JonT  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:06 am

      My inbox is still very hungry.

      Reply
      • 6. Dave in ME  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:39 pm

        Mine, too. 250 unread P8TT comments isn’t enough!!!

        Dave

        Reply
    • 7. Ann S.  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:11 am

      scribing, tho’ work is suffering.

      Reply
      • 8. Ann S.  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:16 am

        helps to check the box, I find.

        Reply
      • 9. Lesbians Love Boies  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:26 am

        I finally started remembering the check boxes – however, lately -after my ‘scribing’ post – i start reading other posts, and forget to go to gmail and confirm the subscription..

        Reply
      • 10. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:19 pm

        Yes, but one of the things I like about the subscription list page is that if I have several posts from here that come up in short order, once I confirm one, I can click on pending and confirm all of them in order and not have to wait for the following confirmation emails to hit my inbox. Saves me a lot of time.

        Reply
    • 11. Sagesse  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:12 am

      Here. Aye. Present. Whatever.

      Reply
  • 12. Kevy-4-Felyx  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:04 am

    Subscribing for Felyx

    Reply
  • 13. Alan E.  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:08 am

    Oooo I can’t wait!

    Reply
    • 14. Ronnie  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:10 am

      Patients is a virtue…but F that…I can’t wait either…..<3…Ronnie

      Reply
  • 15. Straight Ally #3008  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:10 am

    It’s the final countdowwwwnnn…..

    Reply
    • 16. Zachary  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:33 am

      Haha, that’s my ringtone!

      Reply
    • 17. Marc Gibson  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:05 pm

      Thanks for the fun video. I’m so nervous about the trial result that it was a nice distraction.

      Reply
    • 18. Rhonda  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:28 pm

      ahhh my pot headedish daze

      Reply
  • 19. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:15 am

    Last night on the NOM bus – part three.

    Brian and Louis sit on opposite sides of a tiny fold out table on the bus. Between them is a phone, it’s speakerphone light blinking to indicate someone is on the line and listening. They stare forlornly at the phone, saying nothing.

    From the phone we hear Maggie, breathing. Her sighs echo their faces.

    Brian and Louis look at each other. Louis opens his mouth to speak, but then closes it again. Finally, he speaks.

    Louis: So… ummmm… once the ruling is in, can I still keep the bus?

    Fade to black.

    Reply
    • 20. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:36 am

      LOL LOVE IT!!!!

      Reply
      • 21. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:47 am

        Thank you! I am working on a scene for the beginning of the tour, trying to keep myself occupied so that I don’t keel over in the next one to three hours. AAAAHHHHH!

        Reply
      • 22. Alan E.  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:50 am

        You can always do prequels, too.

        Reply
    • 23. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:23 pm

      Once the ruling is in, can I get a school bus and put pictures of OUR families on it and gather members of my P8TT family for a victory tour across the US? Only with all of us going to all 50 states!

      Reply
      • 24. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:24 pm

        Where on earth would you find a big enough bus???

        :)

        Reply
      • 25. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:02 pm

        A London Double-Decker of Course! Or maybe we can rent an Amtrak. After all, they are currently doing advertising asking us for our travel business. Has the FRC all up in arms! We’ll call the the P8TT Family Reunion Tour.

        Reply
    • 26. adambink  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:59 pm

      Perhaps it’s time for “Summer for Marriage: The Musical”. I think many of these scenes would make it in.

      Reply
      • 27. Mykelb  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:30 pm

        The NOM folks don’t make for very good drama. It would have to be a comedy.

        Reply
    • 28. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:24 pm

      And “dream sequences” too!!!

      Reply
    • 29. rick jacobs  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:38 pm

      You gotta write and film this for our site!

      Rick.

      Reply
    • 30. Felyx  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:42 pm

      Alternate ending…

      Louis looks to Brian and says… ‘Will you marry me?…’

      Snark!

      Reply
  • 31. her.wife  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:19 am

    omg y? is time going so slow

    Reply
  • 32. Zachary  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:20 am

    scribing

    Reply
  • 33. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:23 am

    Waiting anxiously.

    Reply
  • 34. Bolt  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:28 am

    This is my ignorant opinion: #3 WIN, except no stay will be granted pending appeal, because as Walker will reflect, there is absolutely no reason to deny ss couples the right to marry. Marriage equality will resume, in California A.S.A.P.

    Maggie Gallagher, and Brian Brown are pathetic liars, and raging bigots. They deserve to reap what they sow!

    Reply
  • 35. Sagesse  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:35 am

    Brian, I’m not a lawyer, so I am reduced to logic.

    The most defensible ‘narrow’ win (California only) is that prior to Prop 8, the CA Supreme Court had ruled that LGBT in CA had marriage equality. The only thing Prop 8 accomplished was to take a way a constitutionally protected fundamental right from a group of people. And isn’t that animus?

    The most defensible ‘broad’ win is that the right to marry is a constitutionally protected fundamental right, and the only people in CA who cannot marry are those who, by their nature, will only choose someone of the same sex.

    Have no idea how that all fits (or not) into the puzzle box that is constitutional civil rights protection.

    Reply
    • 36. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:51 am

      I organize the possible decision in my mind differently.

      There is the threshold decision of what standard of review he should apply. As we’ve discussed before, there are two ways heightened scrutiny will apply – either it’s decided that the fundamental right to marriage includes marriage to a person of the same sex (strict scrutiny), or g&l are determined to be a suspect or quasi-suspect class (strict or intermediate scrutiny).

      Then, there will be analysis of whether the law passes muster using the appropriate level of review. Even if Walker decides that heightened scrutiny is required, I won’t be surprised if he also goes through an analysis of rational basis review.

      Obviously, if g&l are determined to be a suspect or quasi-suspect class, and this decision is upheld by SCOTUS, then this has wide implications for any law which discriminates based on sexual orientation.

      But no matter what standard of review he uses, the other thing I’ll be looking for is what set of facts he uses to determine the law is unconstitutional. (assuming that’s his holding). Even if it’s upheld on appeal, the set of facts considered crucial to the ruling will determine how useful this case will be as precedent in other marriage equality cases.

      Reply
      • 37. Sagesse  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:07 pm

        Let’s see if I’ve got this right.

        Marriage as a fundamental right wins marriage (and federal DOMA) but nothing else (not DADT or immigration or ENDA). Live to fight another day.

        Suspect class wins everything.

        What my gut is telling me is that SCOTUS will be less sqeamish about ‘marriage as a fundamental right’ than it will be about ‘suspect class’. That’s where I was going with ‘most defensible’, most likely to survive SCOTUS.

        Reply
      • 38. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:09 pm

        Wasn’t contradicting you, just adding a comment. It was as much a comment on Brian’s post as yours. Just offering the perspective of the way I organize the issues in my own mind.

        Reply
    • 39. Sagesse  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:18 pm

      @Kathleen,

      Wasn’t contradicting your either :). Thinking out loud.

      Reply
      • 40. MJFargo  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:29 pm

        Alright, Kathleen. If this is a positive ruling, we’re going to need you to lead us in a cheer (of your own choosing, of course).

        Reply
    • 41. Sarah  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:28 pm

      I don’t think I can express how much I appreciate y’all’s insight and input here! I never even knew was “strict scrutiny”, “suspect class”, etc. meant (or that they were even terms), but I have caught on with all the drilling that has been done about them. I feel all the more enlightened and ready to talk about this out in the world because of it. I often hesitate to join political discussions when I don’t feel that I can speak intelligently, although I think my friends would say that I know a lot about current events! So this small slice of law education has been a great help to me! Thanks! I am trying not to be too optimistic, but I just can’t help it…

      And, I have taken a few posts off from subscribing, but I think I am ready for the onslaught again… :)

      Reply
      • 42. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:37 pm

        I’m glad this has had such a positive effect on you. I agree that one of the impacts this site has had is helping people understand the judicial process and what the legal arguments are. I realize that as a legal nerd, I’m somewhat prejudiced in how important I think it is, but I do believe that the more we all learn about this, the better advocates we are.

        When I was a cheerleader (yes, I was a cheerleader in high school), the football coach made us attend classes on how the game was played, so we understood what was going on out on the field and could respond with appropriate chants and cheers. I see this as somewhat analogous to understanding the basics of civil right law making one an effective civil rights advocate.

        Reply
  • 43. Lesbians Love Boies  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:37 am

    Which law/legal transcribers are going to be here on P8TT to explain the decision to us in ‘layman’s terms’?

    Reply
    • 44. l8r_g8r  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:51 am

      I’ll be around and will do my best.

      Reply
      • 45. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:59 am

        Please read it as quick as possible and see if you can report back asap on what level of scrutiny he decided on. That is a real important question to me. Oh and thank you!!!

        Reply
      • 46. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:30 pm

        Thank you l8r_g8r and Kathleen. I have learned so much from you two about the law and how it works. And I truly hope I get to meet everyone here in my P8TT family.

        Reply
    • 47. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:54 am

      I’ll be around, at least for a while. But planning on heading out for events in the eve.

      There should be plenty of analysis available through MSM and blogs, as well.

      Reply
    • 49. Kevin  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:09 pm

      In my opinion, there is no substitute for the real thing. Although Walker’s decision is likely to be peppered with latin terms and citations, his prose will be clear and comprehensible to anyone. I would recommend simply reading the text while ignoring the citations, footnotes, etc. before consulting websites or blogs.

      Reply
      • 50. Sarah  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:32 pm

        Agreed! I have found that reading the rulings, plaintiff requests, etc. has been much easier than one might think. LIke you said, if you can block out all the citations it is usually pretty clear what is being said! And, then it’s not shaded in anybody’s bias.

        Reply
  • 51. Neil  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:42 am

    IMHO, Judge Walker presented the list of questions to both parties as a means to weaken any appeal based on the argument than one side was not permitted the opportunity to present their side. If I were a judge, I wouldn’t like to have a decision overridden by another court because of an avoidable omission.

    Reply
    • 52. Alan E.  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:45 am

      I like how Olsen and Boies did extra credit and filled out all of the questions, especially those directed just at the Defendants.

      Reply
      • 53. Neil  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:01 pm

        Completeness meant every question was answerable.

        Reply
  • 54. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:55 am

    F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5 F5

    Reply
    • 55. Alan E.  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:56 am

      I’m on a new computer now, so for me it’s:
      COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R COMMAND+R

      Reply
  • 57. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 11:57 am

    I love how this website is passed off as a trial tracker when in reality this website is 100% a no on 8 website. There is no place you can go without the spin being put on every story. I would love to just hear the truth of what is going on for once.

    Reply
    • 58. Andrey  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:02 pm

      Was there an inaccuracy in any of the trial transcripts? Was any quote tampered with?

      This website contains the truth of what is going on. It also contains commentary based on the position that prop 8 should be overturned. If you want something with a pro-8 spin, there are plenty of other sites to go to.

      Reply
    • 59. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:03 pm

      Read the transcripts of the trial. Read the decision when it’s released. That’s the truth.

      Reply
    • 60. DazedWheels  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:05 pm

      It’s simply not true, Mike, that this site is one-sided. I can’t count the number of cross-links to NOM posts and related sites, and this site has never censored the “arguments” or “evidence” of the Yes on 8 side of the fence. If you want or need a clearer view of the trial, head over to the American Foundation for Equal Rights site, and read the transcripts – like most of the rest of us have. BTW, I’m not trying to be harsh or hateful.

      Reply
    • 61. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:06 pm

      We do have opinions, yes Mike, but everyone on both sides has. Try reading the court transcripts for the truth of the story. We here are waiting for the ruling, which will be the judge’s words, not ours, so that, too, is truth.

      Reply
    • 62. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:11 pm

      Yeah that is the only way to get the truth reading the court papers. Wish I could just get snippets that are true but not with a spin. This is written, with every story on this site, with a no on 8 spin. So both sides are not getting a fair shake.

      And yes there are inaccuracies on this website. There are assumptions and points of view that are purely speculative. But then again that is typical with every news source these days. Spin spin spin.

      Reply
      • 63. Chris  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:13 pm

        Where are the inaccuracies?

        Reply
      • 64. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:16 pm

        I don’t know that this site ever claimed to be an unbiased news source, but we do try to keep it as even keeled and honest as we can, bearing in mind we all have strong opinions on the subject.

        If you find something that you think inaccurate, please, speak up! We love a good discussion about things. We are constantly coming at things from different sides here, and finding our way through these issues.

        So pull up a chair and join the dialogue!

        Reply
      • 65. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:51 pm

        poor little troll. This site doesn’t give you 100% agreement with your ideology, so it must be a spin factory that is nothing but lies. What’s the matter, are you actually having to think for a change? Is it hurting you?

        Reply
    • 66. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:15 pm

      You think this is a fair shake:
      “1. LOSE – Prop 8 is a permissible act of the people acting legislatively. Well, I’m not sure how much I need to explain this one, but it’s the worst case scenario for us. In this situation, Judge Walker would be saying that the people, acting as the state’s legislature, had a “legitimate” interest (any interest really) in regulating against marriage equality, and that Prop 8 was rationally related to that interest. This is the so-called “rational basis” test. Now, the Defense of Marriage Act recently failed that test, but that doesn’t mean Prop 8 couldn’t pass. Of course, this doesn’t mean the case is over, just that we are on hold as we move forward through the system
      2. Win – The implementation of Prop 8 is unconstitutional.
      This is how we win, without getting everything we really want. This would clearly be a win for our community in the state of California, but would provide relatively little precedent value for other states. The basic rationale here would be that by allowing the 18,000 couples to be married, and not future couples, the state has violated the equal protection of those couples who were not able to wed. This rationale was suggested in a couple of the amicus briefs filed on behalf of the plaintiffs. It could be seen as something of a middle ground, but let’s be honest, it will not satisfy anybody who opposes marriage equality. And it further muddies the underlying issues when what we really need is clarity. Could it happen? Yes, it very well might. But this rationale would be a lame attempt at Solomonic baby-splitting that would present more questions to be answered by other courts.
      3. WIN – Prop 8 is a violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment and/or the Due Process Clause
      This would be our ultimate victory, and really, what Olson and Boies are going for in this case. As I presented above, there are two possible rationales, and I’ll discuss those below. But skipping over the logic, the net result would likely be the complete nullification of Prop 8. However, Judge Walker is likely to issue a stay pending appeal, especially if he overturns Prop 8. In other words, don’t make wedding plans just yet.”

      No wonder both sides are so misguided on the truth neither get a story without a spin these days. Though that is the politics of today. Spin your way into a law or office.

      Reply
      • 67. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:20 pm

        I’m not sure what you are objecting to in that post? It lays out the possible outcomes, and how the pro-marriage-equality side would be affected.

        This is a pro-equality site.

        Reply
      • 68. fiona64  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:29 pm

        As has already been pointed out, this is a pro-equality site. You are welcome to read as many sources as you so desire, and weigh the bias (or lack thereof) accordingly.

        Love,
        Fiona

        Reply
      • 69. l8r_g8r  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:33 pm

        Yes, please share the specifics of your concerns.

        Reply
      • 70. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:35 pm

        No it says if we win or if we lose. That right there shows that the spin is biased.

        “Well, I’m not sure how much I need to explain this one, but it’s the worst case scenario for us” Show’s that I’m only telling you how this pertains to my side of the story and I won’t get into it for how it will play into the other side of the story.

        So effectively you are being told it only will hurt the no on 8 side. Not how it effect the yes on 8 side. Or how losing will for no on 8 will play into what may come for them. I’m just pointing out how simple a site can sway you. Both sides are very much given their spin without fact.

        The fact of the matter is equality will be separate but equal kind of thing where it isn’t really equal but that side has something kind of like what the other side has. Which is completely a violation of equality.

        On the neutral side is the fact that the people have voted and a judge will completely rip open their position to do something they do not have the power to change. Opening a can of worms for money backed firms to change anything they want.

        On the other side I can’t tell you how it will impede on religion but I have heard that side argue it and I have seen articles stating that lesbian couples have forced them to use property to marry the couples. Which would be a violation of freedom of religion.

        If you don’t look at it from all sides it is a spin.

        Reply
      • 71. l8r_g8r  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:44 pm

        Mike, allow me to address a few of your points.

        First, this website is a pro-equality website, aka pro-marriage, aka pro-same-sex-marriage. That is obvious from (a) the logo at the top left of the page parodying the “Yes on 8” logo with two women as the head of the family and (b) the image of two men with a child. Consequently, the dialogue is written with that in mind. This site does not claim to be neutral. It does, however, do its best to present facts rather than rhetoric.

        Second, you stated that a judgment striking down Proposition 8 would “completely rip open their position to do something they do not have the power to change.” In a sense, that is correct. The ruling would say that the people do not have the legal authority to pass laws that prohibit same-sex couples from entering into a civil marriage. There are other things the people by vote cannot do — they cannot vote to eliminate the right of women to vote; they cannot vote to prohibit different races from intermarrying; they cannot vote to cancel all public construction contracts even if they are for outrageous prices. The people do not have absolute power and that is simply the nature of our government.

        Third, you have referenced the situation in which a church lost their property tax exemption because they refused to allow a same-sex couple to use a gazebo for their commitment ceremony. That case was based entirely on anti-discrimination laws in a state that did not even allow same-sex couples to marry so Proposition 8 is entirely inapplicable. Even if same-sex marriage were relevant to the analysis, the church was holding itself out as providing the property to the public, which is how it was able to maintain its property tax exemption. By denying its use to same-sex couples, they were not acting in accordance with the law and they were not holding it open to the public. Consequently, they were not entitled to a property tax exemption. There is much more information on this topic and I would be happy to add more if you would like, but I think I’m out of room.

        Reply
      • 72. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:44 pm

        Yes, Mike. We all agree with you. There are opinions being expressed here.

        I am still not sure why you are finding that to be a problem. This is a pro-equality site. We are going to express things in terms of the way the outcome will affect our positions. But even though we do that, what we are SAYING while we do so is the truth.

        If the judge rules in certain ways, it will have certain effects.

        We know what the NOM side claims the results will be if the ruling goes in our favor. We discuss it at great length constantly. However, we also know that there have been numerous studies that show their claims of harm to heterosexual marriage or to children to be false. So the truth is, if the ruling goes against us, we do see great harm, if it goes in our favor, we do see great good.

        Read the rest of this blog for tens of thousands of posts with legal opinions, links to studies, personal stories, humor, anguish and hope in them that equal justice under the law will prevail.

        Reply
      • 73. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:56 pm

        l8r_g8r, I won’t get into huge arguments with you about yes or no versions because one I’m not educated enough in that regard to even began to debate you on either side…and frankly it isn’t really what I care to find out about right now.

        What I’m really and have been concerned with is not that Judge Walker is overturning a vote as that is in her power. Judge Walker is overturning an amendment which as far as I know is not within Judge Walkers power and would be crossing a new line that was protected by law.

        Reply
      • 74. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:57 pm

        Maybe to you this is spin, but this is our very lives we are talking about here. This is only one part of the bigotry and animosity we must deal with. I guess you think it is only spin when we get upset that a 20-year-old man beat a 17-month-old child to death for “acting like a girl” thanks to spin factories who claim that we are evil and sick. What is wrong with being human and wanting to have the same rights, responsibilities and protections for your spouse and your relationship under the law as everyone else has? If looking at things from the POV that most affects US is spin, then I will take it. But don’t call it spin just because you don’t agree. Give us a valid reason why you disagree. Give us more than some dogma that was derived by men, give us hard legal peer-reviewed facts.

        Reply
      • 75. l8r_g8r  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:01 pm

        Mike, I was only trying to address the concerns you stated in clear and precise language without spin. Just presenting facts.

        You stated:

        What I’m really and have been concerned with is not that Judge Walker is overturning a vote as that is in her power. Judge Walker is overturning an amendment which as far as I know is not within Judge Walkers power and would be crossing a new line that was protected by law.

        This is a federal judge determining if a state law (granted, it is a constitutional law) should be overturned for violation of the federal law. This is a textbook supremacy issue. Where federal law and state law are in conflict, federal law prevails. I am happy to explain further if you like.

        Reply
      • 76. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:04 pm

        Richard I agree it is your life and it isn’t equal if this passes. What I’m said was that it doesn’t address all the sides. I’ve also clearly stated that I do believe there is a huge spin and that I don’t know enough about the religious side to claim I do know the truths. I’m trying to find out if this is a violation of this particular judges rights to even rule against an amendment.

        I could care less what the lawyers say is true because I work in case law, not as a lawyer, and I know how much lawyers lie and how much money can change the world. I was looking more for an actual point in the right direction as to if Judge Walker is violating laws by ruling against this being an amendment and not just a law.

        Reply
      • 77. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:05 pm

        State laws can’t violate the parts of the US Constitution which have been determined to apply to the states. This applies equally to state constitutions. If Mississippi, for example, decided to amend its constitution to make slavery legal, the amendment would be challenged in federal court on the basis that it violates the US Constitution. That’s what’s going on here: Did California amend its Constitution in such a way that it violates the US Constitution?

        Reply
      • 78. Ann S.  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:08 pm

        @Mike, if you’re right and Judge Walker can’t do this, the 9th Circuit will overturn his decisioin. That also IS within our system. No need for you to worry that the system isn’t working.

        Reply
      • 79. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:30 pm

        Actually, this is NOT crossing a new line, this is within Judge Walker’s power. And Judge Walker is a man, so why are you referring to him as HER? As a federal Judge, it is fully within Judge Walker’s duty to recieve testimony and to render a decision on whether a state constitutional amendment is constitutional, because amendments to state constitutions still have to be within the US Constitution. So it is obvious that you really need to go to a local law library and study up on this. Or if you cannot get access to one, go to the local library and find a book on US Civics.

        Reply
    • 80. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:19 pm

      “I’ll not give you the whole Wikipedia version of substantive due process…”

      That is a prime example of the inaccuracies of Wikipedia….it is written by people who want to push their side of the story. Most of what is on Wikipedia is wrong. To even show that you get your information from Wikipedia shows how misguided you are. Wikipedia is a great place to start to get some direction but far from accurate. To quote anything from it is showing your lack of commitment to the news at hand.

      Reply
      • 81. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:21 pm

        Would you slow down a bit and pick a specific point with which you disagree? I am only getting that you don’t like anything we have had to say ever, which is really a difficult way to start.

        Pick a point and lets discuss it and go from there, please?

        Reply
      • 82. nightshayde  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:28 pm

        Mike — there are a number of lawyers and other legal professionals here, translating legalese into more understandable forms for the rest of us. The legal definitions of due process, of suspect classes, of levels of scrutiny, and a variety of constitutional issues have all been addressed at length in the comments at some point during the lifetime of this blog (which is clearly written from a pro-equality POV).

        Summing up long complicated legal concepts via a shorthand Wikipedia approach is reasonable here — it’s not being used as the be-all end-all definition of any topic that’s been discussed.

        Reply
      • 83. Andrey  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:30 pm

        Wikipedia is one of the most accurate single information sources on the planet. Its error rate is comparable to the Encyclopedia Britannica, as determined by actual comparison research. Most of what is on Wikipedia is correct. To say that “Most of what is on Wikipedia is wrong” shows how little you understand about what is and is not “accurate”.

        Giving both sides a fair shake does not mean saying that both sides are equally likely to be right. Sometimes, in actual reality, one side is simply wrong. This is one of those cases.

        Reply
      • 84. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:38 pm

        Andrey are you getting those statistics from Wikipedia that you are not quoting at all. Wikipedia is not checked for facts very often and written by anyone who wants to write it with a spin.

        That is why most colleges will flunk you for quoting Wikipedia, but not for Encyclopedia Britannica. Hmm logic seems to be that Wikipedia is far from accurate.

        Reply
      • 85. JonT  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:41 pm

        Dude, just read the transcripts. It will take a lot of time, but there will be no bias.

        Barring that, you could watch the trial re-enactments at http://marriagetrial.com/ . That will also take some time. That’s just the way it works.

        I am just surprised that you are surprised that this is a pro-equality site… NOM and other organizations that oppose equality are out there, you can read their ‘spin’ as well if you wish.

        I’m just not sure exactly what you are complaining about.

        If you do not trust someone else’s research or interpretation, do your own. If you don’t like wikipedia’s definition of anything, use the google to find another site more to your liking.

        Reply
      • 86. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:44 pm

        Ohhhh Mike, the guy who wrote this Topic, Brian Leubitz is also an attorney. He writes it simple since we are for the msot part not attorneys. He was also at the trial.

        Reply
      • 87. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:45 pm

        So Andry if defeating this is the only right decision then it doesn’t matter that a judge is going outside of their powers to violate our system and overturn the law? Which in turn would open up all judges to do the same for anyone with money as they would just piggyback this law as a legal defense to why they can do that? This is not in Judge Walker’s power to even hear this case let alone judge on it.

        Which is what makes me wonder about what is at stake and I would like to hear a non spin version of what is going on and all the outcomes on both sides.

        Reply
      • 88. Andrey  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:50 pm

        Most colleges will not “flunk you for quoting Wikipedia”, and in terms of research citations, Encyclopedia Britannica is equally unacceptable, because neither it nor Wikipedia are a primary source. That has nothing to do with their accuracy.

        There are plenty of references for Wikipedia’s general accuracy. The most commonly cited study is mentioned here: http://news.cnet.com/Study-Wikipedia-as-accurate-as-Britannica/2100-1038_3-5997332.html. That study found, for example, the same number of major errors in articles from each source, and only slightly more minor errors in the Wikipedia articles.

        Reply
      • 89. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:51 pm

        Okay, Mike. I was willing to give you a pass on the issue of this site exhibiting a pro-equality bias. Maybe you really thought this was a source for unbiased news and didn’t realize it’s a site by and for people who are advocating marriage equality.

        But you’re just showing your ignorance when you say that Judge Walker has no right to be hearing this case. I suggest you go pick up a junior high civics text book and learn more about what the role of the judiciary is.

        I don’t have time for extended posts right now. But, in brief, the federal courts primarily do two things: (1) interpret law and (2) decide whether or not a law violates the US Constitution. This is all done against the backdrop of case law and precedent.

        Hopefully, someone else with more time can elaborate.

        Reply
      • 90. JonT  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:52 pm

        @Mike: ‘So Andry if defeating this is the only right decision then it doesn’t matter that a judge is going outside of their powers to violate our system and overturn the law? Which in turn would open up all judges to do the same for anyone with money as they would just piggyback this law as a legal defense to why they can do that? This is not in Judge Walker’s power to even hear this case let alone judge on it.

        Which is what makes me wonder about what is at stake and I would like to hear a non spin version of what is going on and all the outcomes on both sides.

        Ahh, there we are. If you actually believe what you wrote there, you are definitely on the wrong website :)

        You do not really seem to understand what is going on here, if you can actually make the statement: ‘This is not in Judge Walker’s power to even hear this case let alone judge on it.

        It demonstrates a clear lack of understanding of many things, including ‘our’ system of government. Yes, I think I’m starting to learn towards Richards opinion: troll.

        Really Mike, I think you are looking for the NOMblog site. Google for it.

        Reply
      • 91. Andrey  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:53 pm

        Mike, are you a lawyer, constitutional scholar or other legal scholar? Because reputable lawyers, constitutional and legal scholars believe that this judge, in our system, certainly does have the right to hear this case and make this ruling.

        Reply
      • 92. Ann S.  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:56 pm

        Mike, Mike, Mike. The judiciary exists, in part, to protect minority rights, and to prevent excesses in legislation that unfairly impact minorities.

        Checks and balances. That IS how our system works.

        Reply
      • 93. Sagesse  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:57 pm

        @ Mike.

        “This is not in Judge Walker’s power to even hear this case let alone judge on it.”

        Well, the whole federal court system seems to disagree, since here he is… well, hearing it and judging it. And I do believe that is truth, fact, whatever, not opinion.

        Reply
      • 94. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:57 pm

        “Which in turn would open up all judges to do the same for anyone with money as they would just piggyback this law as a legal defense to why they can do that? This is not in Judge Walker’s power to even hear this case let alone judge on it.”

        This is exactly in his power to do. Judges interpret the law, that is why we have them. In the case of a law that is unconstitutional, it is the judge’s JOB to rule on that law based on the constitution and to do so he or she uses other cases as precedents. That is how the system works.

        So the Judge is doing precisely what he SHOULD be doing in this case, and we are waiting to hear what his ruling is on the subject. His ruling will help to inform any further cases on the subject, specifically any appeals of this case.

        Reply
      • 95. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:18 pm

        Obviously, Mike, you must have either not taken civics class, or you skipped out on the day that the role of the judiciary in the maintenace of constitutionality was discussed. You are basically using the same arguments today that were used against the “activist judges” who ruled in favor of the plaintiff in such cases as Loving v. Virginia, Brown v. Board of Education, and similar cases.
        So which chapter of NOM are you a member of? Or are you one of those who has been deluded by the Knights of Columbus or President Momson?

        Reply
      • 96. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:24 pm

        l8r_g8r as far as I was under the assumption it violated a federal law. So it should have gone to federal court and not a states court. Judge Walker is a Chief Judge for Northern California.

        Reply
      • 97. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:29 pm

        Ah, that’s where the confusion is. No, Walker is a federal judge. He’s the Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. The lowest level of federal courts are the District Courts. These are broken up into a number of districts within each state. But this is a federal court.

        Reply
    • 98. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:37 pm

      As if the NOMbies give the truth? What do you consider the truth, dear troll?

      Reply
      • 99. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:48 pm

        Richard…. play nice. So far he is not being a troll, he is asking questions and we are trying to answer him. Let’s cut him a little break, especially as we are all a bit edgy today.

        Here, let me pass you some ice cream? :)

        Reply
      • 100. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:48 pm

        Have I not stated that both sides spin and all news spins Richard. Or do you not read? I was hoping to come on here to hear a not opinionated version based on the idea that this is a prop8 trial tracker not a no or yes on prop 8 trial tracker.

        This does not account for any of the non yes or no issues of prop 8 which is a judge abusing power to overturn that which Judge Walker should never have the right to rule on per our system.

        Reply
      • 101. l8r_g8r  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:50 pm

        That’s an interesting argument, Mike. Under what legal analysis do you believe that Judge Walker does not have the authority to hear a federal challenge to Proposition 8?

        Reply
      • 102. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:50 pm

        OK MIke, what does the judge not have the right to rule on?

        Reply
      • 103. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:52 pm

        Richard you were right, TROLL!!!!!!!!

        Reply
      • 104. Bryan  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:55 pm

        Correction: It’s the Prop 8 Trial Tracker, courtesy of the Courage Campaign.

        The reason this site is one of the few who put the transcripts up is because we’re not afraid of the truth. You won’t find a NOM site or one of their likeminded friends posting the actual transcripts from the trials. Know why? Because it makes them look REALLY REALLY BAD. That’s not convienient for their bottom line, so they just write a bunch of spin posts on the trial each day. Lemme ask you something.. do you goto their pages and criticize them (when you’re actually able to post) or is that just for this website? You say you came here expecting neutrality, this is essentially the best you’ll get. You want it without the commentary? Goto Firedoglake, they’ll accomidate you.

        Reply
      • 105. Bryan  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:58 pm

        And, double posting, Mikey. Read the Constitution, read the powers of the Judiciary. Read them in their entirety. I believe you haven’t the foggiest what you’re referring to good sir. Judge Walker has every right to overturn an unconstitutional law, as do all Judges. Because they are granted the power to interpret the Constitution and strike down laws which may be unconstitutional. “Activist Judge” just refers to a Judge who is actually doing their JOB and striking down laws that are illegal!!!!

        Reply
      • 106. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:20 pm

        I will try, but it is very difficult. Especially when he keeps coming back with the NOM party line.

        Reply
      • 107. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:22 pm

        Actually, that is where you are misinformed, Mike. A very important part of our judiciary is to prevent the majority from codifying tyranny of the minority. The judicial branch exists, in part, to provide the minority voice with a means of reparation so that we are still allowed to have our full civil rights and full due process under the law.
        I think you would do well to go to the local library and pick up a book on civics and the judiciary.

        Reply
      • 108. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:25 pm

        l8r_g8r as far as I was under the assumption it violated a federal law. So it should have gone to federal court and not a states court. Judge Walker is a Chief Judge for Northern California.

        Reply
      • 109. Ann S.  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:25 pm

        Walker is a Federal District Judge.

        Reply
      • 110. Bill  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:31 pm

        If we subscribe to ‘Mike’s’ line of thinking, all future cases involving heterosexuals will be decided by gay judges?

        I’m TOTALLY down with that, Mikey, you dig?

        Reply
      • 111. l8r_g8r  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:35 pm

        Yup, Judge Walker is the Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. He is within the federal judicial system. The district court has jurisdiction to hear cases involving a question of federal law.

        Reply
  • 112. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:00 pm

    About an hour from now (right?), starting countdown…

    Reply
    • 113. Andrey  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:03 pm

      The estimated timeframe was “1-3 Pacific”, so anywhere in the next three or so hours.

      Reply
  • 114. Bob  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:03 pm

    Mike, that will happen between 1-3 hang in there

    Reply
  • 115. Steffi  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    any minute now…

    Reply
    • 116. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:14 pm

      Steffi in The Ivory Coast in Africa the soonest would be 45 minutes from now

      Reply
  • 117. Knowledge  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:06 pm

    Looking forward to the decision… whatever it is will pave the way for further action down the road.

    Reply
  • 118. mkinla  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:11 pm

    Just wanted to thank Brian Leubitz for this thoughtful analysis. Thank you!

    Reply
  • 119. Doyle Awtrey  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:19 pm

    No matter what the outcome of this court ruling will be we, as LGBT Americans need to stop waiting for someone else to give us rights. It’s time for all of us to come out! In our daily lives, the military and the work place. Let the straights deal with reality of just how many LGBT people touch their lives. Waiting for someone else to give you some equality is not going to work. If you want it go out and make it happen. The straight American life does not include us. If we want to be recognized as full American citizens we need to claim the rights and make it happen! Organize, start a grass roots movement. Set aside all our LGBT differences and concentrate on equality for all of us. We can do this! Yes we can, start living for the future, a future of EQUALITY!

    We need to stop waiting for piecemeal rights and demand equality NOW! On all civil rights issues we need to be treated as full citizens not second class citizens. You are a human being living in America, you need to demand to be treated equally, not allowing discrimination to deprive you of your civil rights. Don’t allow bigots to deny you your rights as a human being. If you don’t stand up for yourself who will?

    Reply
    • 120. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:27 pm

      Yes, Doyal, yes 1,0000% YES!

      Reply
    • 121. Matt  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:43 pm

      Standing O

      Reply
  • 122. nightshayde  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:23 pm

    Going afk for a little bit. Hold down the fort for me, everyone!

    Reply
  • 123. Lesbians Love Boies  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:25 pm

    Reply
    • 124. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:32 pm

      Oh I LOVE this version! Even though he MANGLES the lyrics badly, the music itself is so pretty!

      Reply
      • 125. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:44 pm

        I recommend the entire album. It’s really beautiful.

        Reply
  • 126. Millie  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:32 pm

    May they over turn Prop. 8

    Let’s NOT legislate LOVE.

    Good Luck!

    Reply
  • 127. Dwight  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:33 pm

    It is also time for us folks that don’t happen to be gay to come out in support of our fellow Americans rights as Americans.

    This fight is for liberty, justice and freedom, every real American should have no question at all in their minds.

    Reply
    • 128. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:38 pm

      I so agree with you Dwight…this is an issue of Equality, not one of Straight VS Gay

      Reply
  • 129. Wren  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:38 pm

    Right on Doyle! If everyone in the closet came out en mass, the debate would be over.

    On another topic, this waiting is killing me. I’m have a great deal of trouble concentrating on my work this afternoon.

    Reply
  • 130. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    Anyone want to be that Chief Judge Vaughn Walker will quote their (the defendents) witness David Blankenhorn in his decision, “The day we permit Same Sex Marriage wil be the day that we are more American” I will bet the donut against the hole that he quotes that in his decision.

    Reply
  • 131. ChrisQ  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    Maggie is madly chopping onions so she can appear to cry for her new video where she begs good Christians for more money.

    Reply
  • 133. Alan E.  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    I had to go to the gym. I need to get rid of some of this stress. Hi from the exercise bike!

    Reply
    • 134. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:46 pm

      Hi! I just walked around my house outside LOL.

      Reply
  • 135. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:49 pm

    Hi Louis!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  • 136. l8r_g8r  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    Are we there yet?

    Are we there yet?

    Are we there yet?

    Reply
    • 137. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:51 pm

      Don’t MAKE me turn this blog around!!

      LOL

      Reply
      • 138. l8r_g8r  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:53 pm

        Hmm… I wonder if PACER and ECF have the bandwidth for this sort of activity.

        refresh

        refresh

        refresh

        Reply
      • 139. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:05 pm

        I was actually just wondering the exact same thing.

        Reply
  • 140. Ann S.  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:53 pm

    Free to Be — You and Me:

    Reply
    • 141. Jason  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:24 pm

      OMG I remember watching this in 1st grade! 1976? WOW!

      Reply
  • 142. Bill  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:54 pm

    Sitting in my office. Stomach still in knots.

    I feel like I could laugh, cry, vomit and pee in my pants all at once.

    I feel sadness that innocent human beings are being put through this and pride that we LGBT citizens are the strongest individuals on planet earth!

    Reply
  • 143. Richie  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:57 pm

    I am hoping for the best for my GLBTQI American brothers and sisters. This waiting is killing me. Much love from Ontario, Canada

    Reply
  • 144. ChrisQ  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:57 pm

    I hear you Bill.

    Reply
  • 145. AndrewPDX  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    Ok, as with many of us, my nerves are all a-jitter, and my vindictive imagination is taking over…
    Imagine that Walker not only gives us the big win mentioned, but that the evidence of the damage caused by Prop8 is so strong, he rules that Prop8 itself is a hate crime and orders the ProtectMawwaige.com leaders be forced to pay damages to the plaintiffs, any affected coupl/family, the cities & counties & state agencies that have had to pay extra costs (as were pointed out in the trial)…
    Then NOM really will need all those donations :D

    Ahh, fantasies can be nice, eh?

    Love,
    Andrew

    Reply
  • 146. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    Oh boy.

    Reply
  • 147. Matt  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:00 pm

    1 PM PDT according to my computer- time to start crossing those fingers and holding those breaths!

    Reply
  • 148. Francis Martin  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:02 pm

    I feel kind of jealous living in florida and all…. no way we cant overturn our version of prop 8 right now (prop 2)… Me and my partner cant even adopt kids. The Only state that directly addresses the issue of gay adoptions is florida.. there is one case that is being fought in the state supreme court, i think the closing arguments were in sept 09… so no idea whats going there..but Good for you guys… please remember us in the sunshine state when our turn to fight comes up…we are gonna need a ton of cash….

    Reply
    • 149. atty79  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:10 pm

      The case isn’t before the supreme court yet (at least not one I know of). We’re waiting on the Third DCA (appellate court) to give its opinion. Whoever loses will most likely appeal that opinion to the state supreme court.

      Reply
    • 150. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:17 pm

      Francis, my heart goes out to you fully and completely for living in a state with such terrible awful laws. Children are a joy and I sincerely hope that you are blessed one day to become parents.

      Reply
  • 151. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:02 pm

    AND….. here comes the Jeopardy theme in my head again….. aaaahhhhh!!!!

    Oh, and Hi Louis! Are you as excited as we are?

    Reply
  • 152. Francis Martin  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:03 pm

    i wonder if fox new is even gonna bother to cover this?

    Reply
  • 153. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:04 pm

    How are we going to know the verdict if they post a new topic and we are sitting on this topic refreshing every 10 seconds. I hope they psot right in this topic.

    Reply
    • 154. Francis Martin  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:05 pm

      send “equal” to 69866.. you will get the verdict as soon as it is read. Fight for equality runs that service

      Reply
      • 155. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:07 pm

        I did… and I am sure one of us (or all of us :P ) will post as soon as our phones start to ring.

        Reply
      • 156. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:11 pm

        I can’t I’m in France

        Reply
      • 157. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:13 pm

        We will tell you RIGHT AWAY. I promise!

        Reply
      • 158. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:37 pm

        I will be on it just as soon as my LG Rumor2 begins to buzz.

        Reply
      • 159. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:39 pm

        I keep getting a message that ‘The shortcut failed or is no longer active’ :-(

        Reply
  • 160. Francis Martin  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:04 pm

    they sure can andrew… but i just want a win… a win here and for the democrats to retain the house in November….

    Reply
  • 161. Bryan  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:07 pm

    They’re mentioning it on CNN now too, they’re following it right up to when the court document pops up in the infoverse

    Reply
  • 162. Bob  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:07 pm

    Well just to bring a little reality to this all, there are a few downsides to marriage,

    for example the other day my hubby and I took are care for it’s first service, as we pulled into the lot low and behold there was an amazing Pleasureway camper van, just the thing I been dreaming about, on a Honda lot, it was in great shape etc. and the dealer was so ready to make a deal, I could have made a trade and left in a new van to hit the road, and try being a gypsy, cept for the fact that my husband is the responsible side of this flight of fantasy.
    we have to compromise, two yrs ago I could have done what I want. just sayin

    and I did laugh at you Straight Grandmother announcing you went for a walk around your house outside, to relieve the anxiety. love it

    guess what I got to do, clean the house, cause my husband says I’ve been glued to this site for so long there are cobwebs and dirt from neglect, so to appease him we did a little joint clean,

    beware there are some things one gives up when they get married, p.s. good news I’m learning from NOMERS how to spin, I bet I could wangle that luxury van if I spin it the right way.

    yup still waiting

    Reply
    • 163. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:14 pm

      I have a huge pantry and I cleaned it from top to bottom today, it took me hours which is just what I needed as I am so many hours ahead of all of you. I needed busy work so I now have the pleasure of a spotless and well organized pantry.

      Reply
      • 164. Joel  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:43 pm

        Can you make it out to Vegas, SG? My kitchen is mess!

        Reply
  • 165. Bill  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:12 pm

    Sorry if this is a repost, but here is the official court site for updates:

    https://ecf.cand.uscourts.gov/cand/09cv2292/

    Reply
    • 166. DazedWheels  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:17 pm

      Is the Court’s web site timing out occasionally for anyone else?

      Reply
      • 167. Lesbians Love Boies  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:20 pm

        I’m sure that server is taking a battery of hits right now…which is a good thing :)

        Reply
      • 168. Bill  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:23 pm

        Yes. You will have to ‘refresh’ sometimes to connect to the web site. I am sure Maggie and Brian are hitting their F5 keys while maniacally drooling all over their keyboards.

        Reply
  • 169. Alan E.  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:14 pm

    My hopes are so high that your kiss might kill me
    So won’t you kiss me, so I die happy?
    My heart is yours to fill or burst.

    I know this is out of the context of the song, but this is how I feel right now.

    Reply
  • 170. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:15 pm

    Hey, want some other good news??? Looks like BP has finally capped the oil well!

    This looks to be a good day for EVERYONE.

    Well, except Brian, Maggie and Louis.

    Reply
  • 171. Francis Martin  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:15 pm

    is it bad that im searching to see if scalia has any medical conditions? you know conditions that might expedite his retirement in the next 2 years?

    Reply
    • 172. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:18 pm

      Maybe (?)

      Reply
  • 173. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:19 pm

    Wow. Over 2,000 reads so far on the Motion to Stay. Glad to see so many people engaged in the process.

    Reply
  • 177. Max  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:19 pm

    word from someone I know, who works at the court:

    WE WIN

    PROP 8 UNCONSTITUTIONAL!

    I don’t have any more details yet.

    Reply
    • 178. bb  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:21 pm

      Thanks Max, but I want to hear it from the horse’s mouth…..

      Reply
    • 179. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:24 pm

      Holy Crap I hope you are not just teasing us.

      Reply
  • 180. PamC  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:20 pm

    We’re home cleaning up our back yard and patio in preparation for our renewal of vows tomorrow night…the fact that our wedding anniversary will always be the day after this decision isn’t lost on us!!!

    Reply
  • 181. Francis Martin  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:20 pm

    dont mind the other conservatives of the SCOTUS, but scalia…. just rubs me the wrong way. Very Mouthy for a supreme court justice…

    Reply
    • 182. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:46 pm

      Actually, after reading the book “Supreme Conflict,” by Jan Crawford Greenburg, I have found out that it is Clarence Thomas who is the one to worry about. Turns out that Scalia is Thomas’ lap dog, not the other way around.

      Reply
  • 183. Phillip R  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:21 pm

    Fingers crossed and my faith in our government is hanging in the balance. The inequities have gone on far too long. Gets more difficult as each day passes in my 6 year relationship (6 down..forever to go) to see the differences we’re forced to tolerate every day.

    Reply
    • 184. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:25 pm

      Scalia bothers me because he can’t seem to get past his own prejudices, especially in matters of religion. But Clarence Thomas is the one who REALLY bothers me. He doesn’t even seem qualified to be on the Court.

      Reply
      • 185. Francis Martin  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:29 pm

        at least Thomas is quiet… hardly ever releases a statement. Scalia sometimes openly mocks his colleagues which i find outrageous. I dont even think the SCOTUS should be allowed in the state of the union… no idea why roberts went this year….

        Reply
  • 186. bb  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:22 pm

    The ECF page is slowing down due to everyone refreshing…. I hope it doesn’t crash!!!

    Reply
    • 187. Jordan Opalanie  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:25 pm

      Still able to see it, but is slowing down a bit

      Reply
    • 188. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:26 pm

      I can’t even get it to load right now.

      Reply
    • 189. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:30 pm

      It’s probably me. When the IT guys look over the logs they will say, “Well there was this woman from France who refreshed it over 1,000 times” I can’t get it to refresh hardly at all in the last few minutes.

      Reply
  • 190. Bob  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:23 pm

    Max bad!!!

    Reply
    • 191. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:27 pm

      Not that we are upset Max, but we need to hear the official word before we can believe it… you understand?

      Reply
  • 192. Jeff  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:27 pm

    http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2010/08/judge_vaughn_walker_hands_vict.html

    Judge Vaughn Walker Hands Victory to Proposition 8 Opponents

    8/4/10 at 4:16 PM 1Comment

    Big news: According to a source who has seen the 136-page decision, U.S. District Court Judge Walker has ruled Proposition 8, the California voter-approved ban on gay marriage, unconstitutional under both the due-process and equal-protection clauses. We’re staying tuned and will report more details when we get them.

    Reply
    • 193. Dwight  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:32 pm

      I truely hope that is correct.

      It is both Equal-Protection and Due Process.

      Reply
  • 194. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:28 pm

    WWWWOOOOOO HOOOOO!!!!!

    Reply
  • 195. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:28 pm

    My internet got cut off I hope l8r_g8r is still out there or someone that can answer this without some spin why it is ok to see it yes or no.

    l8r_g8r as far as I was under the assumption it violated a federal law/constitutional. So it should have gone to federal court and not a states court. Judge Walker is a Chief Judge for Northern California/states court.

    So is it the way the case is being presented that gives Judge Walker the right to vote on this case?

    Reply
    • 196. EdC  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:36 pm

      Mike, Judge Walker is a federal judge whose district is in California.

      Reply
      • 197. Mike  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:40 pm

        CDC-He is not in the Federal courts. He is in the States court. I think you are confusing that issue.

        Reply
      • 198. Ann S.  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:41 pm

        Mike, you’re wrong. Federal District Judge.

        Reply
    • 199. Rhonda  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:38 pm

      Judge Walker is a federal court judge for northern ca, not a state judge.

      Reply
    • 200. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:54 pm

      Judge Walker is federal. He almost did not get his federal judgeship because of his ruling in the Gay Olympics case. He is a Federal judge, so this case is squarely in his job description.

      Reply
      • 201. Kathleen  |  August 5, 2010 at 12:50 am

        Just for the record, Walker wasn’t a judge in the Gay Olympics case. He was in private practice at the time and was the lawyer for the Olympic Committee when they sued over the use of the name “Gay Olympics.”

        Reply
      • 202. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 5, 2010 at 5:52 am

        Thank you for correcting me, Kathleen. The error was totally mine.

        Reply
      • 203. Kathleen  |  August 5, 2010 at 2:33 pm

        Hope that didn’t come across as harsh, Richard. In my attempt to keep up with all the news and posts, some of my comments have been really brief. You know I love you, right?

        Anyway, this misunderstanding – Walker as the judge instead of an attorney in the case — is prevalent in the discussion of the case. And you know me – I think it’s important to get our facts straight, even if I value lack of straightness in other ways. :)

        Reply
      • 204. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  August 5, 2010 at 3:32 pm

        @ Kathleen: No, it did not come across as harsh. It just came across to me as a concise, clear correction for which I am grateful. Not harsh at all. And I also appreciate the fact that you were right to the point. I would rather have that than someone who goes around their derriere to get to their elbow, so to speak.

        Reply
  • 205. Abbe  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    live video outside the courthouse

    http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/livenow?id=7592623#&cmp=twi-kgo-article-7592623

    Reply
    • 206. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:41 pm

      Is there anything playing on the ABC website, I am over there but it jsut says Loading/Loading/Loading and it could be that I am blocked since I am connecting from outside the uSA

      Reply
  • 207. JAB  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    Not falling for it. Still waiting for the real thing.

    Reply
    • 208. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:30 pm

      Yes.. ok.. sorry. :P

      Reply
  • 209. aeon  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:30 pm

    ny magazine is reporting that it will be a 136 page ruling that strikes down prop 8 on both due process and equal protection clause

    Reply
  • 210. Miles  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:31 pm

    http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2010/08/judge_vaughn_walker_hands_vict.html

    CAN WE CONFIRM THIS????

    Reply
    • 211. Slade  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:31 pm

      Ditto. Twitter is blowing up with this.

      Reply
    • 212. Rebecca  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:32 pm

      Until I see Boies himself dancing I won’t believe it. (Or until I see it on the official court website…)

      Reply
    • 213. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:34 pm

      It hasn’t posted to PACER yet.

      Reply
  • 214. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:33 pm

    I bet it is true… can’t imagine NY Mag would run with it if they didn’t have a reasonable hope of it being true.

    Reply
    • 215. Kathleen  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:36 pm

      I think it’s true, but mostly because I think it’s highly likely this is the result. But just because twitter is blowing up … well they report live people dead all the time. :)

      Reply
  • 216. Francis Martin  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    great now im just watching the video feed… while refreshing the other pages….stop sending me stuff people lol cant help myself

    Reply
  • 217. Kevin  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    It’s all over Drudge Report:

    http://www.drudgereport.com/

    Reply
    • 219. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:37 pm

      ARgh. That site is blown up.

      Reply
  • 220. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    Hey can somebody call the courthouse and tell them that their server is down, while you are on the phone with them ask what the decision is. Thank you.

    Reply
    • 221. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:38 pm

      LOL SG!

      Reply
  • 222. Jon Sweitzer-Lamme  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    (we won)

    Reply
  • 223. Rebecca  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    I don’t think the courts expected quite so many people to visit the site! I can’t even get it to load a teensy little bit anymore!

    Reply
  • 224. Lesbians Love Boies  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:39 pm

    I have a glass of champagne ready to toast (am thinking with the positive vibes now)

    Reply
  • 225. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:39 pm

    ABC Live feed all are cheering…

    Reply
  • 226. Jon Sweitzer-Lamme  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:39 pm

    here’s a Scribd link: http://www.goodasyou.org/good_as_you/2010/08/eek-the-prop8-decision-is-here.html

    Reply
  • 227. Alan E.  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:41 pm

    OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG!!!!

    Reply
  • 228. James Tuttle  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:42 pm

    ITS DONE WE WON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  • 229. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:43 pm

    YES!

    Both due process and equal protection!!!

    We won!

    Reply
  • 230. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    Sweepingly we won!!!!!!!

    Reply
  • 231. Straight Grandmother  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    We did win!!! Lord have Mercy!!!
    And Justice for ALL even for MY children.

    Reply
  • 232. Ben C in MO  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    CNN just said unconstitutional is the decree!

    Reply
  • 233. Angel  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:45 pm

    It’s on CNN right now! Prop 8 OVERTURNED!

    WOOOO HOOOOO HOOOOOO!!!! YES! YES! YES!

    Reply
  • 234. rick jacobs  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:45 pm

    We need your video comments and reactions right here on this site. Put up your reactions in one or two minutes, max.

    Reply
  • 235. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:46 pm

    “Plantiffs have demonstrated by overwhelming evidence that Proposition 8 violates their due process and equal prtection rights and that they will continue to suffer these constitutional violations until state officials cease enforcement of Proposition 8.”

    Reply
  • 236. Anonygrl  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:48 pm

    “… the court orders entry of judgement permanently enjoining its enforcement; prohibiting the official defendants from applying or enforcing Proposition 8 and directing that the official defendants… shall not apply or enforce Proposition 8. The clerk is DIRECTED to enter judgement without bond in favor of plaintiffs… and against defendants…”

    Reply
  • 237. Elsie  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    Woohooo, see you all tonight in the Castro!!

    Reply
  • 238. Angel  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:54 pm

    LINK TO PROP 8 DOCUMENT!

    http://www.goodasyou.org/good_as_you/2010/08/eek-the-prop8-decision-is-here.html

    Reply
  • 239. Lee  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:56 pm

    What about that “stay” business???

    Reply
  • 240. l8r_g8r  |  August 4, 2010 at 1:57 pm

    I’m not sure I can read and summarize 136 pages, but Walker himself does well on page 136:

    Plaintiffs have demonstrated by overwhelming evidence that Proposition 8 violates their due process and equal protection rights and that they will continue to suffer these constitutional violations until state officials cease enforcement of Proposition 8. California is able to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, as it has already issued 18,000 marriage licenses to same-sex couples and has not suffered any demonstrated harm as a result, see FF 64-66; moreover, California officials have chosen not to defend Proposition 8 in these proceedings.

    Here’s to equality!

    Reply
    • 241. Lee  |  August 4, 2010 at 2:02 pm

      Those words should ring true to all 50 states. What are the rest of us waiting for?!

      Reply
  • 242. Bolt  |  August 4, 2010 at 2:10 pm

    Amazing. Who will intervene?

    Reply
  • 243. rick jacobs  |  August 4, 2010 at 2:25 pm

    Folks, please, please video your reactions. Add your testimony to this site. We need YOU out there. Just say, “I’m XXXX from ____, zip xxxxx. Here’s my testimony.”

    Testify!!!

    Rick.

    Reply
  • 245. Douglas  |  August 4, 2010 at 2:58 pm

    I have found a NOM blog with comments open. Have fun! :)

    http://nomblog.com/1256/

    Reply
  • 246. The Prop 8 Decision — Barry Pump's Blog  |  August 4, 2010 at 4:58 pm

    […] Prop 8 decision in Federal Court was handed down today. It was a massive win for the gay rights movement. Naturally, I’m most concerned about the political science […]

    Reply

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