Prop 8 is Really, Really Dead

California Supreme Court rejects bid to enforce marriage ban

by Brian Leubitz

Andy Pugno and his crew are seemingly out of options in their increasingly quixotic quest to defend Prop 8. Everybody else in the world saw the writing on the wall when the Supreme Court dismissed the case on standing grounds, but they held out hope. It is over now:

The justices unanimously denied review of a suit by conservative Christians who put Proposition 8 on the ballot and argued that it remains in effect statewide, despite a federal judge’s 2010 ruling in San Francisco that declared it unconstitutional. (SF Chronicle)

But don’t worry, Pugno is taking it well. In a statement, he had this to say:

“The California Supreme Court’s choice not to address the merits of our case, like the U.S. Supreme Court’s choice to avoid the merits, leaves grave doubts about the future of the initiative process in our state. Now, voters will be less confident than ever that their votes will mean something. When politicians disregard the law, and the courts refuse to get involved, what are we left with?”

Oh, so much to work with here. First, Prop 8 was ruled unconstitutional by a federal district court judge, and then by a 9th Circuit panel. You are upset that your votes don’t count? Tough, it is the purpose of the courts to protect minorities from the abuse of the majority. That isn’t a bug, that is a feature of our Constitution.

But, on another level, Pugno and his crew should be happy to just have kept the game up for as long as they did. The writing was on the wall. It probably would have involved wasting a lot of money, but Prop 8 wasn’t going to last long. In the most recent Field Poll (PDF), 61% of Californians support marriage equality. That’s up from their 2008 poll, when 51% supported it. Had this gone to the ballot, marriage equality supporters would have won easily.

Perhaps Pugno should be thanking the courts for saving him a lot of embarassment (and cash). But for a guy who reaches at “increasingly absurd” legal challenges, as SF City Attorney Dennis Herrera called ProtectMarriage’s remaining options,  perhaps a thank you letter won’t be forthcoming.

2 thoughts on “Prop 8 is Really, Really Dead”

  1. I was talking to my wife about this a few days ago

    The view and treatment of LGBT people has changed so Dramatically in not that many years

    To say nothing of the status of women and ethnic minorities

    We are doing some things right as a society

    Sometimes, you lose sight of that

    Nobody expected Prop 8 to pass

    I sure didn’t

    But, if it were on the ballot today, it would lose overwhelmingly

    That is progress

  2. …that the CASC refused their case without a hearing and a full blown written decision, although I wish they had.

    My take is that if there had been a hearing and a written decision, they would have come down so hard on Pugno,, and the Alliance Defense Fund that they likely would not have been able to show their faces in California legal circles again.

    So, now it’s back to the strip mall for Andy.

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