April 11, 2012
By Scottie Thomaston
As usual, huge thanks to Kathleen for this information
In Golinski v. OPM, a Ninth Circuit challenge to the Defense of Marriage Act by a federal employee of the circuit court, BLAG, the defenders of the Act, filed a document on April 5 that is a combination of several briefs and motions. It’s a response to DOJ’s motion to consolidate and expedite the challenge, as well as a motion to stay pending a decision on whether or not the court will hear the case en banc as requested by the Justice Department late last month, and a motion to dismiss a separate appeal by the DOJ.
Today the court issued an order in Golinski:
(1) Motion to consolidate and expedite is granted; sets briefing schedule
(2) BLAG’s request to stay denied: sets May 2 deadline for BLAG response to petition for en banc hearing
(3) Motion to dismiss DOJ’s appeal denied; jurisdictional issues may be addressed in briefing.
(4) If initial en banc hearing not granted, arguments will be scheduled for week of September 10-14, 2012, in San Francisco
The case will proceed on a faster track than it would have otherwise. There is not yet a decision on whether the en banc hearing will be granted, so the timeline depends on what happens there.
In McLaughlin v. Panetta, challenging DOMA as it applies to military servicemembers (and also challenging a similar law specifically related to military benefits), a motion was filed by plaintiffs to reopen the case temporarily so that BLAG can intervene. The judge had granted a 60 day delay back in February to give the government time to respond to the challenge. That means the case is on hold until April 28th at this point. This filing is asking the court to move the time for intervention up so that a decision to intervene is made by April 20.