California Supreme Court Accepts Question, Arguments Set for September

Yeah, you heard that right. September 2011.  So, we’ll be waiting for a while. Here’s what the Court said:

 The request, pursuant to California Rules of Court, rule 8.548, that this court decide a question of California law presented in a matter pending in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, is granted. For the purposes of briefing and oral argument, defendant-intervenors Dennis Hollingsworth, Gail J. Knight, Martin F. Gutierrez, Mark A. Jansson, and (collectively “Proponents”) are deemed the petitioners in this court. (Cal. Rules of Court, rule 8.520(a)(6).) In order to facilitate expedited consideration and resolution of the issues presented, and to accommodate oral argument in this matter as early as September, 2011, the normal briefing schedule is shortened, pursuant to California Rules of Court, rule 8.68, as follows: The opening brief on the merits is to be served and filed on or before Monday, March 14, 2011. The answer brief on the merits is to be served and filed on or before Monday, April 4. A reply brief may be served and filed on or before Monday, April 18. Any person or entity wishing to file an amicus curiae brief must file an application for permission to file such brief, accompanied by the proposed brief, on or before Monday, May 2, 2011. Any party may serve and file an omnibus reply to any or all amicus curiae briefs on or before Monday, May 9, 2011. The court does not contemplate any extension of the above deadlines. Votes: Cantil-Sakauye, C.J., Kennard, Baxter, Werdegar, Chin, Moreno, and Corrigan, JJ.

We will likely have a decision by the end of the year on standing.  If the Supreme Court rules that the proponents have standing, then we’ll be talking about another few months.  If they say there isn’t standing, then in all likelihood Judge Walker’s decision will stand for California.

I’ll save you from another discussion of the general standing question, as there are many such blog posts around the internet, some of which I’ve written myself. Just google “Prop 8 standing” for more information, and you’ll be flooded with information.

The Courage Campaign launched a campaign asking same-sex couples who are waiting to tell their stories.  You can find more info about that here.

One final comment.  The continued dragging on of this case means that real families are still denied equal rights.  It is a tragedy and a travesty. I’m a political hack, but at some point, we need to win this one at the ballot.

3 thoughts on “California Supreme Court Accepts Question, Arguments Set for September”

  1. Of the hundreds of issues on the political landscape, I don’t think there is one that has such a stark difference between right and wrong, good and bad.  That gays and lesbians have been denied their rights for so long, have been ridiculed and marginalized for so long–it all makes me very sad.  And angry.

    I’m so frustrated with all this process, but at the same time, I think its clear that hearts and minds are changing every day.

    Thanks to the Courage Campaign for their great work.

  2. Tried to get to the court website to read the full text, but in the paragraph above it names the defendant-intervenors as petitioners.  Does it go on later to name people to argue the other side (our side)?  Will it be Boise & Olson, or the State arguing as to why the defendant-intervenors don’t have standing?

  3. If there were a move to take marriage equality back to the ballot, this Sup. Ct. schedule is a possible setback. If they don’t rule till September 2011 or later, you’re quite near the point where a new initiative for 2012 needs to be filed. It’s possible to file in Oct. 2011 or even November and still qualify for the Nov. 2012 ballot, but you have less time to get signatures and it would be more costly.

    Just noting the wrinkle in timing here…

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