January 13, 2010
By Julia Rosen
In a 5-4 ruling, with the conservatives in the majority, SCOTUS has continued the stay of Judge Walker’s ruling. AP:
The Supreme Court has indefinitely blocked cameras from covering the high-profile federal court trial on the constitutionality of California’s ban on same-sex marriage.
This is a huge blow for accountability in transparency. In addition, viewing the trial had the potential to change the hearts and minds of countless Americans.
It’s going to be more important than ever that we continue to document the trial here and will need all of our readers’ help to get the word out about the proceedings to your friends, family and co-workers.
Help us keep the Prop 8 Trial Tracker going. We’ve set a goal of 2,000 donors by Friday. Can you chip in here?
[UPDATE] 2:08 The SCOTUSblog has more info up:
Splitting 5-4, the Supreme Court on Wednesday blocked any television broadcast to the general public of the San Francisco federal court challenge to California’s ban on same-sex marriage. The stay will remain in effect until the Court rules on a coming appeal challenging the TV order. The Court, chastizing lower courts for attempting “to change its rules at the eleventh hour,” issued a 17-page opinion. The ruling came out nearly 40 minutes after an earlier temporary order blocking TV had technically expired.
[UPDATE] 2:58 Justice Breyer in his dissent mentions letters we delivered from our members and CREDO twice. If anyone out there doesn’t think online actions matter, here’s is proof that they do. (link: warning .pdf)
Then, on December 31, the Court revised its public notice to ask for comments directly. By January 8, 2010, the Court had received 138,574 comments, all but 32 of which favored transmitting the proceedings.
…here was also sufficient “opportunity for comment.” The parties, the intervenors, other judges, the public—all had an opportunity to comment. The parties were specifi- cally invited by Chief Judge Walker to comment on the possibility of broadcast as early as September. And the entire public was invited by the District Court to submit comments after the rule change was announced, right up to the eve of trial. As I said, the court received 138,574 comments during that time. How much more “opportunity for comment” does the Court believe necessary, particu- larly when the statutes themselves authorize the local court to put a new rule into effect “without” receiving any “comments” before doing so when that local “court determines that there is an immediate need” to do so (and to receive comments later)? And more importantly, what is the legal source of the Court’s demand for additional comment time in respect to a rule change to conform to Judicial Council policy?