California | David Boies | Gay Marriage | News | Proposition 8 | Ted Olson

Federal Challenge to Proposition 8 Withstands Motion to Dismiss

The federal challenge to Proposition 8 brought by Ted Olson and David Boies today withstood a motion to dismiss from Prop 8's backers, setting the stage for a full court trial:

Walker "Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker, in a ruling from the bench in San Francisco, said a trial was needed to resolve crucial issues, including whether gays and lesbians are persecuted minorities entitled to judicial protection from discriminatory laws...Sponsors of Proposition 8, approved by 52 percent of the voters in November, argued that the initiative was clearly constitutional under U.S. Supreme Court precedents, which have never recognized a right to marry a person of the same gender...The sponsors contended that Prop. 8 was based on an ages-old tradition of male-female marriage and the ability of opposite-sex couples to conceive children. But Walker said the Supreme Court, in striking down laws against interracial marriage and by allowing prisoners to marry, had defined the right to wed as fundamental without limiting it to certain groups."

Walker, who said in July that he wanted to expedite the case, has scheduled the trial to begin in January.

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  1. Yeah

    Posted by: Antny | Oct 14, 2009 5:59:45 PM

  2. I've been telling you doubters and naysayers for months that Ted Olson and Vaughn Walker are the greatest thing for gay equality since... ever. They are doing EVERYTHING right. I think there is a really good chance that this thing goes all the way and settles the matter for all of America for once and for all.

    Posted by: Pender | Oct 14, 2009 7:16:28 PM

  3. Winning a motion to dismiss only means that the judge recognizes that their complaint was properly written (states a claim for relief, is in the right jurisdiction, etc). This thing could still die long before it ever gets to trial. The real victory won't be until the 9th Circuit rules on it.

    Posted by: Matt | Oct 14, 2009 7:23:01 PM

  4. Regardless of whether they are correct (and we know they are), they still have to get it through multiple levels and past SCOTUS: the Roberts court, with the Homophobe Scalia. Remember it was 20 years between CA's case Perez v. Sharp and the SCOTUS decision in Loving v. Virginia.

    Which means that we STILL have to fight fight fight every step of the way: first in Maine and Washington State, then DC and NY. I'm phone banking this weekend, are you?

    And meanwhile our brothers and sisters are being assaulted on the streets, while their attackers get off with a wrist-slap.

    Posted by: IT | Oct 15, 2009 12:22:57 PM

  5. Equal protection under the law - pretty simple and something most rational Americans understand. Not "special" rights but CIVIL rights. Call me naive, but I think this is how this is going down, once and for all. I'm grateful to Messrs. Olsen and Boies and feel a sense of optimism that's been 30 years coming...

    Posted by: MARK DOUGLAS | Oct 15, 2009 2:07:55 PM

  6. Ted Olson's going to get a great decision from Judge Walker, but that's just the first stop on a very long road. Let's just hope there's a good decision when it gets appealed and the Supreme Court doesn't take the case. If the current Supreme Court takes it, it's probably gonna be ugly.

    Posted by: Z | Oct 15, 2009 4:37:16 PM

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