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US: Supreme Court justices question proponents of Proposition 8

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  1. “One possibility is that the court will decide to not rule on the case, leaving Proposition 8 in place.”

    Surely if they refuse to rule on the case, then the last ruling of the lower court (i.e that prop 8 is unconstitutional and should be overturned) stands

    1. Justice Kennedy’s role is key. During the hearing he made the observation,
      “There are some 40,000 children in California with same-sex parents and they want their parents to have full recognition and full status. The voice of those children is important in this case, don’t you think?” If full consideration of the larger issue is rejected by the court majority, the Ninth Circuit Ct’s decision will stand, and SSM will once again become legal in California.

  2. On the other hand 26 Mar 2013, 8:06pm

    Listening to Scalia browbeat Olsen, and not let him reply to any of the questions, I’m amazed he was ever made a judge.

  3. I listen to the Audio about 2 hours ago, it was very interesting to hear question’s about “LAW” im emphasis law because it was more about states law as well as law of the land. They where all coming from different angle’s. And many questions where asked. Regardless of what happened in that court room it was truly a historic time in the United States. 2morrow it will be the case of D.O.M.A. cant wait to listen to that the supreme court has to say.

    1. If the curt backs off and judges rule the proponents of prop8 have no standing then the ruling of the 9th circuit is upheld and prop 8 is repealed. The ruling would apply to California only.
      It is not a good idea to put much emphasis on the judges’ questions. They often play devils advocate.

  4. SCOTUSblog is in no position to be stating definitively that the Prop 8 proponents will be denied for standing (meaning marriage equality will come to California and nowhere else).

    SCOTUS asks tough questions and it’s hard to predict what Kennedy (and Roberts) will decide.

    The standing issue is a serious one and there are major objections to both alternatives. I can’t see Roberts supporting a broad rejection of the public’s right to defend a ballot initiative.

    If Kennedy really wants to take that option, perhaps he’ll assemble a pragmatic alliance to do, possibly straddling the usual lines. More likely, if SCOTUS denies standing, I expect a clever, narrow rejection of standing that minimises the fall-out for referendums.

    I still think the most likely outcome is that SCOTUS will uphold the 9th Circuit decision, and its shrewd but meretricious reasoning.

    Either course would legalise marriage in California but would leave the wider issues wide open.

    1. SCOTUSblog is possibly a better way to listen to the audio, at least in future, because it gives the text and makes it clear who is talking.

      If you go here;
      http://www.scotusblog.com/2013/03/menu-of-todays-coverage-of-the-proposition-8-argument/

      then choose “Argument audio synced with a searchable transcript is available from the Oyez Project”
      leads to;

      http://www.oyez.org/cases/2010-2019/2012/2012_12_144#argument

      The only sensible way for the US to move forward is a law striking down all same-sex marriage bans, DOMA, and either a) legalising same-sex marriage country-wide, or allowing further states to proceed individually, one by one. But marriage bans, which NOM worked so hard to achieve, will have to be struck down. Anything else would be a travesty of justice.

      1. btw, atalanta the first bit was for the benefit of others, following on from your reference to SCOTUSblog – thanks for that. The rest was in answer to your post :)

  5. If SCOTUS does rule there is no standing, then Prop 8 is invalidated based on lower court rulings.

  6. “One possibility is that the court will decide to not rule on the case, leaving Proposition 8 in place.”

    This is simply not true. If the court decides not to rule, it goes to the 9th circuit ruling. If they deny standing, it goes to the district court ruling.

    Neither of these results in prop 8 being upheld. The only way it is upheld is if at least 5 justices rule to vacate the lower court rulings.

    It’s pretty bad when the commenters have more correct info than the reporters.

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