Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Prop 8 gets its day in court

It’s official now. Oral arguments have been scheduled for March 5 in the California Supreme Court regarding the constitutional validity of Prop 8.

I found it gratifying to read the action filed by Lambda Legal challenging Prop 8; gratifying because it raises the same argument I raised in a previous blog post Dec. 21. And that is Prop 8 does more than amend the California constitution; it takes a significant article of that constitution, and writes an exception. Sounds minor, but think about it. The California constitution protects all the states residents with equal protection under the law. Prop 8 says “except for gay couples wanting to marry each other.” This is a unique and challengeable, in my opinion, assertion. Either the state’s constitution provides equal protection under the law or it doesn’t.

By the way, Lambda cites Baehr v. Miike as precedent, which I’ve written about in this blog here, here, here, and here.

Here is the relevant portion of the Lambda lawsuit: “According to the California Constitution, significant changes to the fundamental organizing principles of state government cannot be made through the initiative process, which involves petition signatures and then a simple majority vote. Instead, such changes first require the support of 2/3 of the state legislature, and then approval by a majority of voters. This would not be the first time the court has voided an improper initiative.”

Read the Huffington Post about this as well.

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