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Closing Arguments Wednesday in California Same-Sex Marriage Case

3 years ago
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Closing arguments Wednesday in the constitutional showdown over same-sex marriage in California have more than just an air of drama about them. U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker asked the lawyers a few weeks ago to answer some key legal questions and the responses, filed Tuesday, were telling.

The case is really about Proposition 8, the ballot initiative which California voters passed last year banning same-sex marriage in the Golden State. Opponents of Prop 8, who support the recognition of same-sex marriage as a fundamental Constitutional right, filed a lengthy brief filled with a great deal of citations to the factual record developed at trial. They want Judge Walker to feel comfortable that there is a factual basis upon which he can create a "new" constitutional standard, at least pending review of the United States Supreme Court. When you are suffering from bad law, the saying goes, you argue the facts.

And when you are suffering from bad facts, the corollary says, you argue the law. And, indeed, supporters of Proposition 8 -- the folks who are opposed to same-sex marriage -- filed to Judge Walker a lengthy brief with many answers that were noticeably short of factual citations. The folks on this side of the equation did not produce a great deal of evidence supporting a ban on same-sex marriage and so they don't want the judge straying out too far from established legal precedent.

Apart from the answers he received, Judge Walker's questions also offered trial watchers a rare glimpse into the mindset of a working jurist. I suspect the complex answers to these questions -- and whatever else the judge may get out of the attorneys in court Wednesday -- will help him complete the landmark ruling he surely has begun to write.
Filed Under: Gay Rights, Law

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lemuel31

I wonder, if this Prop 8 loses thru Supreme Court, what will be the eligibility requirements to marry same sex..do they have to be certified and tested for their gayness? What if they are using this new found privelege to marry an illegal alien,or to gain for personal advantage. What if a straight man marry's another straight man vis versa. What about sex education(sodomy) classes in schools, surely all these issues will be out in the open. Everything will be fairgame from bathrooms, to dressing or transdressing or crossdressing. what a mess

August 05 2010 at 12:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Sheila

An exodus of gays from the State of California would cripple the economy there..THey continue to fight for the right to Marry because they believe in it...and they should contiue to do so...As a lesbian partnered for 17 years , raised 6 children, why shouldnt we be allowed the same rights as heterosexuals that abandon their children, fail topay child support, divorce and remarry mutiple times, ect....Me personally , I want no part of an institution that reeks of instability..I dont need a piece of paper to validate my life...but for those that feel it legitimizes their relationship ...keep on fighting for your rights..its the American way...we all have a voice to be heard...

June 16 2010 at 9:12 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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