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Get Ready for More Prop 8 Rulings

9th Circuit Court of Appeals Marriage equality Prop 8 Prop 8 trial Tapes Trial analysis Videos

By Matt Baume

Get ready for a busy holiday season with a slew of activity in the Prop 8 case. Washington and New Jersey ramp up their marriage campaigns, with good news possibly coming before the end of the year. And homosexuals account for half of all murders, according to guy who makes things up.

Well the big news last week was the renewed momentum in the Prop 8 case. It’s been over a year since the Court declared Prop 8 unconstitutional, and we’ve had to endure a lot of delays before marriages can start back up again. But now we’re facing a flurry of docket activity, hearings, and decisions. It’s a really exciting time, since the case is finally moving forward on the merits.

The ruling last week means that the Proponents have standing to go back to court. But court hasn’t worked out so well for them in the past — they could not have lost the first round of the Prop 8 case more resoundingly. If they want to go again, fine: we’ll be seeing at the 9th Circuit in less than 3 weeks, on December 8 at 2:30pm.

They’ve spent the last year throwing out every distraction they can think of, from gay judges to videotapes to standing, but now they’re finally running out of excuses. On December 8th they may have to talk about the merits of their case — and that’s the last thing they want, because they know their case doesn’t have any merits.

While the anticipation builds in California, a campaign to pass a marriage bill in the legislature is ramping up in Washington state. Visit WashingtonUnitedForMarriage.org to learn more about the coalition pushing the bill. In the last week, they’ve hosted a series of community meetings in Puyallup, Lakewood, Vancouver, Gig Harbor, and Seattle; and this week they’ll be meeting in Bellevue, Richland, Spokane, and Bellingham. It’s all part of a buildup to an intense lobbying effort that’ll target state lawmakers during the 2012 legislative session.

The momentum continues in New Jersey, where Deputy Assembly Majority Leader Reed Gusciora voiced his support for introducing a marriage equality bill before the end of the year. Despite a veto threat from governor Chris Christie, Gusciora claims to have bipartisan support for the measure in the lame duck session.

It’s a bit of a flashback to 2009, when outgoing legislators — including Governor Jon Corzine — were rumored to be working on a lame-duck marriage bill. That effort never materialized, leaving voters feeling disenchanted and betrayed. We’ll find out in the next month if we’ll see a repeat of that failure. It was five years ago that the state Supreme Court ruled that LGBT couples deserve equal treatment under the law, and we’re still waiting.

And finally this week, Oklahoma City has added sexual orientation to its nondiscrimination policy, but not before this guy testified to the city council about why they shouldn’t:

“Judge John Martaugh, Chief Judge Magistrate of the New York City criminal courts, stated, ‘homosexuals account for half the murders in large cities.’”

Oh, neat. Half? That’s a lot. Good thing that statistic is made up. As is “Judge John Martaugh,” who doesn’t exist. If you mean Judge John Murtagh, yes, that’s a real person and he might have said that … sixty years ago, when he was alive and an “anti-pervert” crusader. Judge Murtagh’s son, by the way, also named John, is active in politics to this day. He’s a Councilman in Yonkers, a Republican who supports the freedom to marry.

Those are the headlines, visit us over at MarriageNewsWatch.com for more on all these stories and more. And visit AFER.org to follow the federal case to overturn Prop 8. I’m Matt Baume, see you next week.

7 Comments Leave a Comment

  • 1. Ronnie  |  November 21, 2011 at 11:43 am

    Subscribing & sharing……..

    Occupy Wall Street Hosts First Gay Wedding: http://www.advocate.com/News/Daily_News/2011/11/2

    "Protesters returned to Zuccotti Park in Lower Manhattan on Saturday for an afternoon of events that included the first same-sex wedding to take place at Occupy Wall Street."

    (me) The ceremony was mainly symbolic for the couple, their friends & family, & the OWS protesters but still Congratulations to the happy couple & keep up the pressure….. LIBERTY, SHELTER, & EQUALITY NOW!!!!!

  • 2. Bob  |  November 21, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    What I find amusing regarding last week's decision regarding standing is that the Protect Marriage folks are trumpeting it as some sort of enormous win for them. I've seen arguments pro and con about the appropriateness and consequences of the ruling as a GENERAL matter (someone should be able to defend an initiative is the state declines vs the backers of initiatives are not accountable and the initiative process is itself flawed in ways that couldn't have been anticipated when it was first introduced), the fact is that this win gets them nothing more than an opportunity to lose on the merits of the case. But they don't notice that. They're stuck in the same mindset that convinced them that they didn't need to present actual evidence in support of their case.

  • 3. AnonyGrl  |  November 21, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    Yep. They are not at all interested in the pros and cons of the standing issue itself, which is what we have been discussing at length, and, in fact, what the COURTS have been discussing. They only see "We get to spend more time in court! Another paycheck for us!"

    And what it comes down to is that they are losing this battle, and the only "wins" they have left are the ones that drag it out and make it take longer before they lose.

  • 4. pel  |  November 21, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    It is so funny that they find their standing to be a win. Their big thing is that when it gets to the supreme court they think "It is hard to imagine that the supreme court would come up with a constitutional right to same sex marriage." Are they forgetting that this is merely a Prop 8 question, the question of whether or not an existing right can be granted but then voted away from the people? It is like they don't even understand what their own case is about.

  • 5. Bob  |  November 21, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    There are many things they don't appear to understand. While I don't think even the best lawyer could come up with a legitimate constitutional argument rejecting marriage equality, their counsel doesn't even bother with that. A tautology, an appeal to "tradition," citation of precents that have already been rejected by the courts, "I don't know…" and "We don't need to present evidence on this" really don't constitute earning your fee. If I were on the other side, I'd think about filing a malpractice suit against my counsel. But Protect Marriage folks appear to think Cooper is doing a great job.

  • 6. MightyAcorn  |  November 21, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    Well,our side bought into that, letting them define this as a victory for them and a setback for us(read the comments made by Courage and other groups after the decision came down.) We should have been whooping it up and shouting to the rafters how glad we are this definitive case will be heard on the merits. We enabled their press releases on this one, but hopefully we'll enable their sorry butts into the ultimate loss soon.

  • 7. Josh  |  November 21, 2011 at 6:43 pm

    Haha, that was hilarous about the Murtagh guy. The angry team is getting dumber by the day, thank goodness.

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