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Thursday, November 20, 2008

Full Statement- California Supreme Court Refuses To Halt Enforcement Of Proposition 8

(California Supreme Court Justices)

The California Supreme Court has agreed to review legal challenges to Proposition 8, which was the recently passed ban on gay-marriage, passing with 52 percent of the vote and they also refused to halt the enforcement of the ban which bans any same-sex marriages from taking place until their final decision.

They will not hear the cases until March 2009 according to LA Times.

Reporting from Los Angeles and San Francisco Jessica Garrison -- The California Supreme Court voted 6 to 1 on Wednesday to review legal challenges to Proposition 8, the voter initiative that restored a ban on same-sex marriage, but refused to permit gay weddings to resume pending a final decision.

The court may hold a hearing on the lawsuits as early as March, a timetable that scholars said was swift considering the complexity and importance of the legal issues.

The court's action, taken during a closed conference, suggested that the court wants to resolve all of the legal issues surrounding Proposition 8, including the fate of existing gay marriages, in a single ruling.

The California Supreme Court News Release is a four page PDF document, two pages with the statements and two pages attached consisting of the signed order itself.

Full statement:

California Supreme Court
Takes Action on Proposition 8

High Court Denies Requests to Stay Enforcement of
Proposition 8 and Agrees to Decide Issues
Arising Out of Proposition 8

San Francisco—The California Supreme Court today denied requests to stay the enforcement or implementation of Proposition 8, and at the same time agreed to decide several issues arising out of the passage of Proposition 8.

The court’s order, issued in the first three cases that had been filed directly in the state’s highest court challenging the validity of Proposition 8, directed the parties to brief and argue three issues:

(1) Is Proposition 8 invalid because it constitutes a revision of, rather than
an amendment to, the California Constitution?

(2) Does Proposition 8 violate the separation-of-powers doctrine under
the California Constitution?

(3) If Proposition 8 is not unconstitutional, what is its effect, if any, on
the marriages of same-sex couples performed before the adoption of
Proposition 8?

The court issued its order in three cases filed on behalf of a variety of parties, including same-sex couples who seek to enter into marriage despite the passage of Proposition 8, a same-sex couple who married in California prior to the adoption of Proposition 8, and a number of cities and counties whose officials seek to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Petitioners in each of these cases seek an order directing the relevant state officials to refrain from implementing, enforcing, or applying Proposition 8.

In response to the petitions, the Attorney General filed a preliminary opposition, in which he urged the court to assume jurisdiction over these cases to decide the important legal issues presented, but also argued that the court should not stay the operation of Proposition 8 pending the court’s resolution of the issues. The proponents of Proposition 8 also responded to the petitions, seeking to intervene as formal parties in the action and also urging the court to accept the cases for decision. The court’s order granted the motion to intervene filed by the proponents of Proposition 8.

In its order, the court established an expedited briefing schedule, under which briefing will be completed in January 2009 and oral argument potentially could be held as early as March 2009.

Six justices—Chief Justice Ronald M. George, Justice Marvin R. Baxter, Justice Kathryn M. Werdegar, Justice Ming W. Chin, Justice Carlos R. Moreno, and Justice Carol A. Corrigan—signed the court’s order, although Justice Moreno indicated that he would grant the requests to stay the operation of Proposition 8 pending the court’s resolution of these matters.

Justice Joyce L. Kennard would deny these petitions without prejudice to the filing in the Supreme Court of an appropriate action to determine Proposition 8’s effect, if any, on the marriages of same-sex couples performed before Proposition 8’s adoption.

A copy of the court’s order is attached.

The two page filing found here (PDF)


Campaign for Children and Families, which is a proponent for Proposition 8, issued a statement at their website:

"It's unfortunate that the judges are giving time to the mushy, subjective arguments of homosexual activists who reject the clear reading of the constitution and the clear reading of Proposition 8. If the court disobeys the constitution by voiding Prop. 8, it will ignite a voter revolt. It will also threaten the validity of all future constitutional amendments.

"The court is playing with fire by threatening to destroy the people's vote on marriage. The California Constitution clearly says that the voters have the right to alter the highest law of the land. It's the beauty of the American system of government. The four Supreme Court justices who unconstitutionally invented homosexual 'marriages' -- Ron George, Joyce Kennard, Kathryn Werdegar and Carlos Moreno -- seem to be ignoring the fact that the people get the last word, not the judges.

"The clear reading of the constitution, as well as California's legal and legislative history, tells us there is a world of difference between a constitutional amendment and a constitutional revision. Proposition 8 is a single-subject, voter-initiated amendment, not a legislature-initiated, multi-issue, whole-scale revision that alters many sections of the state constitution.

"If Prop. 8 gutted the constitution, why is it only one subject in one section of the constitution? If Prop. 8 doesn't stand, then our constitution doesn't mean anything, the people's vote doesn't mean anything, marriage has been utterly disrespected, and judges lied when they swore to uphold the constitution. Prop. 8 must stand, because the constitution is above the judges, not the other way around.

Read the rest of their statement here.

Protect General Counsel Andy Pugno, also a proponent of Proposition 8, also released a statement:

“This is a great day for the rule of law and the voters of California. This order means that voters will get their day in court and ensures that voters will have a vigorous defense of Proposition 8 before the California Supreme Court. We are profoundly gratified with the Court’s order and are confident that Proposition 8 will be upheld.”

Read the rest here.

According to the original LA Times' article, linked above, Pugno also stated:

"We see today as a grand slam. Everything we asked for was granted."

ACLU of Northern California, opponents of Proposition 8, via staff attorney Elizabeth Gill:

We’re disappointed that the court didn’t issue a stay, but we’re very encouraged that the court is taking the case.

Other reactions:

Shannon Price Minter, a lawyer for the National Center for Lesbian Rights, one of the litigants, expressed gratitude for the "extremely fast" time- table and disappointment that the court did not permit same-sex marriages to resume pending a final ruling.

"We are concerned that there may be some couples who will never be able to marry because of this because of death or illness," Minter said.

In the meantime, the opponents of Proposition 8, many of the gay activists are still indulging in very violent behavior, which we have shown examples of over the last couple of weeks and can be seen in the video below:


San Francisco Gay Activists Out Of Control

Businesses, Blacks and Mormons Targeted By Gay Activists

Michigan Liberal Gay Group Attacks Church During Services