Wednesday, June 26, 2013


CIVIL RIGHTS | Following Wednesday's historic U.S. Supreme Court decisions repealing parts of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and the high court's decision on Proposition 8 effectively allowing county clerks to soon issue marriage licenses to all, elected officials in the East Bay had much to say as the LGBT community, and the region at-large, celebrated.

Oakland Mayor Jean Quan and Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan (joint statement)
“The Supreme Court’s decisions this morning are a profound victory for same-sex couples – and for humanity. Oakland has long been a place of diversity and inclusion – we overwhelmingly rejected Proposition 8 – and we’ll forever be proud to have been on the right side of history. We are so proud of Oakland for being an instrumental part of the progress we’ve made – and will continue to make for years to come.”

State Sen. Ellen Corbett
“I have always believed that the basic premise of Proposition 8 was deeply flawed and am pleased that, after today’s historic ruling, wedding bells will soon be ringing for all Californians regardless of sexual orientation. I thank the Supreme Court for taking an important step toward true equality and ensuring that all Californians have the freedom to marry the person they love.”

Rep. Barbara Lee
“This is an amazing day for marriage equality and for love. The Supreme Court’s decision striking down the Defense of Marriage Act is long overdue, and I could not be more excited. With this decision, the Court brought our nation one step closer to realizing our Constitution’s promise of equality for all Americans.”

Assemblyman Rob Bonta
"The ruling on Proposition 8 allows two loving adults in California to enter into marriage, regardless of their gender. While it was my hope that the Supreme Court would have more broadly ruled in favor of justice and equality by holding Proposition 8 unconstitutional, their more narrow ruling on the standing of the parties invalidates Proposition 8 and legalizes gay marriage in California.”

Assemblymember Nancy Skinner
"California has two courageous women to thank for fighting the good fight (Berkeley residents Kriss Perry and Sandy Stier, both named in Hollingsworth v. Perry heard before the U.S. Supreme Court). Their efforts affirmed a basic human right that will enable my daughter and all Californians, regardless of sexual orientation, to be treated equally under the law."

Assemblyman Bob Wieckowski
“The momentum is strong, but the struggle for marriage equality will continue in those states that still discriminate. I am confident that someday all Americans will enjoy the rights that Californians now have as a result of this historic day.”


Typical of politicians to have no idea what they are talking about.

Proposition 8 is the amendment to the California Constitution that defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman. A federal trial judge held that Prop 8 violates the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

The Supreme Court held that only the losing defendants in that case--the governor and attorney general of California--had standing to appeal that decision. When they refused to do so, Prop 8's official sponsors filed the appeal with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and pursued it all the way to the Supreme Court.

Since the official sponsors lacked standing to defend Prop 8, the Supreme Court refused to rule on the merits, and also vacated the the Ninth Circuit's decision.

But that means Prop 8 is still the law in California.

As of today, there is no appellate opinion (meaning an opinion issued by a court of appeals) against Prop 8. The Supreme Court refused to issue one, and threw out the only other one (the Ninth Circuit's). There is only a trial court opinion. So every agency in California is legally bound to regard Prop 8 as binding law.

That litigation could take years.

Politicians full of hype and hot air? Imagine that!

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