California Court to Rule on Proposition 8
Special Report - November 24, 2008
In an order issued November 19, the California Supreme Court agreed to hear three lawsuits against Proposition 8, the marriage amendment that was approved by a majority of voters in the state on November 4. The state’s highest court also denied a request by Proposition 8 opponents to halt implementation of the measure. The decision means that same-sex “marriage” will not be reinstated in California. The court also agreed to allow the official proponents of Proposition 8 to intervene in the case as “Real Parties of Interest,” which means that they have the right to represent the parties seeking to uphold the validity of Proposition 8, since Attorney General Edmund G. Brown, Jr., who would normally be tasked with defending challenges to state law, has publicly stated his opposition to Proposition 8. Because the court ordered an “expedited briefing schedule” in the cases, oral arguments could begin as early as March 2009.
“Granting the backers of Prop. 8 intervention in these cases means that voters can be certain that there will be a thorough and vigorous defense of Prop. 8,” said ProtectMarriage.com General Counsel, Andy Pugno, in a press release. “Voters will not have to solely depend on [California] Attorney General Jerry Brown to defend the measure. Since the attorney general was an active opponent of Proposition 8, we did not want the fate of the measure to rest in his defense of it.”
The three lawsuits the court will consider challenge the constitutionality of Proposition 8, arguing that the measure represents a “revision” of the state constitution and not an amendment, which should not have been decided by voters. The court will also consider whether Proposition 8 violates the separation of powers under the California Constitution, and, if it is constitutional, what will happen to the marriage licenses of same-sex couples obtained prior to its passage. The lawsuits were filed by a number of parties, including the homosexual advocacy group, Equality California, a same-sex couple who “married” in the state before Proposition 8 was approved by voters, and the City and County of San Francisco.
“We are profoundly gratified with the Court’s order and are confident that Proposition 8 will be upheld,” said ProtectMarriage.com General Counsel, Andy Pugno, in a press release.
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