Carolyn Clark, Senior Communications Manager at Yahoo, reports that a number of search terms have been spiking at the giant portal related to the Supreme Court rulings on Prop 8 and DOMA Searches past 7 days ending June 25 (breakout refers to a term that is gaining interest and had little to no interest during […]
For almost two hours Supreme Court justices heard arguments on the federal Defense of Marriage Act. The court covered wide ground, once again spending a significant amount of time on the topic of standing. This time the questions were around whether the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group (BLAG), under the leadership of House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, had the legal right to sue. As in Proposition 8, the standing question could give the court the option to avoid the case by ruling that it should not have gone through the court system.
The justices also spent time on whether the federal government should be in the marriage business at all, or if that should be left to the states. Several justices also challenged President Barack Obama’s 2011 decision to stop upholding DOMA, and what kinds of precedent that sets. Solicitor General Solicitor General Donald Verrilli Jr. often tried to bring up the equal protection clause, and whether it applies to gays and lesbians. However, the court often took that question and went back to federal versus states legal rights.
UC Davis Law Professor Vikram Amar discussed the oral arguments with KQED News.
Amar: If one is going to read tea leaves based on the oral argument, it seems as if the court is not inclined to do something huge, in striking down the laws of 40 states that currently prohibit same-sex marriage. My big take-away from this has always been, the court did not really want to take these cases. … They may end up doing nothing at all, because both cases may get resolved on procedural standing grounds.
The basic idea is courts exist to decide crisp disputes, not just answer questions everyone wants answered. So unless you have somebody who is a plaintiff who has a lot at stake, and you have a defendant who is an appropriate defendant, then the court simply should not be able to render a ruling.
After a long and winding road, Proposition 8 had its day at the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday. For more than an hour, the justices of the high court grilled attorneys on California’s same-sex marriage ban.
The oral arguments were dominated by the question of standing, which focused on whether the authors of Prop. 8 have the legal right to defend the measure in court when the state refused to do so. Justices also grappled over the meaning of marriage and what role the court system should have in changing long-held traditions.
The questions that justices ask can shed light on their concerns and how they might rule. KQED spoke with Vikram Amar, a professor of law at UC Davis, about what certain arguments could mean.
Amar: I thought there were three, maybe four, maybe five justices already who expressed significant skepticism about whether the sponsors have standing to defend Prop. 8.
Listen to the oral arguments on California’s Proposition 8 at the Supreme Court this morning.
Read the transcript:
Read all the of the case filings in the Proposition 8 and DOMA cases.
The U.S. Supreme Court has blocked a California law that would require euthanizing downed livestock at federally inspected slaughterhouses to keep the meat out of the nation’s food system. The High Court on Monday agreed that the state’s 2009 law should be blocked from going into effect. That law barred the purchase, sale and butchering of […]
From AP: SAN FRANCISCO — A Republican gay rights group on Friday asked the U.S. Supreme Court to allow a California trial judge’s order barring enforcement of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on gays in the military to go back into effect. Lawyers for Log Cabin Republicans asked the high court to vacate a […]