Obama Administration to Submit Brief Urging SCOTUS to Strike Down Proposition 8

Obama administration officials tell NBC News that the Justice Department will file a brief in the SCOTUS case opposing Proposition 8:

WhitehouseAfter first suggesting it would not get involved, the Obama administration will file a friend-of-the-court brief late today in support of the two gay couples who launched the fight over the issue four years ago, the officials said. Today is the last day for filing briefs in support of the couples' position.

The administration last year signaled it might stay on the sidelines. In May, when President Obama first said that "same-sex couples should be able to get married," he added that it was not a matter for the federal government.

Dozens of amicus briefs are piling in urging SCOTUS to strike down Prop 8. The American Foundation for Equal Rights (AFER, representing the plaintiffs, is keeping track of all of them here as they are filed.

UPDATE, via the AP:

While the administration's friend-of-the-court brief in the Proposition 8 case does not call for marriage equality across the United States, it does point the court in that direction.

A Supreme Court ruling in line with the administration's argument could have broad implications and almost certainly expand the rights of same-sex couples to wed.

The administration's nonbinding brief contends that denying gays and lesbians the right to marry violates the Constitution's Equal Protection Clause. The document urges the justices to give extra rigorous review to any law that discriminates on the basis of sexual orientation.

The person familiar with the brief spoke on anonymity in order to discuss the document before it was filed.


Feed This post's comment feed


  1. News can be mistakenly reported sometimes. We'll have to wait to see.

    Posted by: Andre | Feb 28, 2013 2:11:52 PM

  2. Andre, you people try so hard to paint Obama as a homophobe, it really is funny!

    Posted by: brian | Feb 28, 2013 2:22:53 PM

  3. Maybe this will help: BREAKING: Justice Department will urge US Supreme Court to allow same-sex marriage to resume in California in Prop 8 case - @PeteWilliamsNBC

    Posted by: Belthazar | Feb 28, 2013 2:34:20 PM

  4. YES! That's 100+ republicans filing an amicus; 60 corporations; and now the Executive Office of the President of the United States.

    (and the 2 NFL football players!) Definately feeling the love.

    I wonder if they other side is filing any amicus (or amici!) briefs? Not even Chick-fil-A??

    Haha! In a giddy mood today.

    Posted by: will | Feb 28, 2013 2:35:33 PM

  5. OBAMA 2016!

    Posted by: MARCUS BACHMANN | Feb 28, 2013 2:44:21 PM

  6. This is real movement being made to create change. It's great to see. It really is. Obama does have our back in the end.

    Posted by: Francis | Feb 28, 2013 2:48:44 PM

  7. @Will

    Shouldn't that be "animus" briefs?

    Posted by: Chitown Kev | Feb 28, 2013 2:57:59 PM

  8. Didn't both the Catholic Church and the Mormon Church file Amicus Briefs in support of Prop 8? I thought I read that somewhere...

    Posted by: Kieran | Feb 28, 2013 3:04:55 PM

  9. If they don't file a brief at this point, Obama will have a whole lot of 'splaining to do.

    Posted by: SC David | Feb 28, 2013 3:05:37 PM

  10. OK. Last minute, but OK.
    Where the REAL action is, if you ask me, is Edie Windsor v. DOMA - a NATIONAL issue, not merely a California issue.
    (MERELY California, I like that!)
    POTUS + Co. have until tomorrow to join that as amicuses, amicii, Amiches??
    They damn well better.

    Posted by: Wavin' Dave | Feb 28, 2013 4:02:45 PM

  11. Wait a minute. Where's James E. Pietrangelo, II to call Obama homophobe and tell us this is just a way to pander to gays so he can't get support for 2016 election her can't run for?

    Posted by: Frank | Feb 28, 2013 4:02:51 PM

  12. Hey, Wavin' Dave -- While you're moving the goal posts, you missed the fact that the Obama administration did file an amicus brief on DOMA last week.

    Posted by: Ashton | Feb 28, 2013 4:06:28 PM

  13. lol @ wavin' dave. Wanna try again?

    Posted by: brian | Feb 28, 2013 4:21:23 PM

  14. I really must buy a newspaper.
    Fingers crossed.

    Posted by: Wavin' Dave | Feb 28, 2013 5:08:32 PM

  15. Oh, wait, I did...


    Just that the White House hurrah got lost in the GOP / Corp hurrah.

    Silly citizen am I for caring.

    Posted by: Wavin' Dave | Feb 28, 2013 5:13:09 PM

  16. Just to clarify a point, Obama did not file an amicus brief in the DOMA (i.e., Edie Windsor case). The USA is an actual party in that case, so "Obama" filed a brief as petitioner. The USA is not a party to the Prop 8 case, which is why Obama is filing an amicus brief in the Prop 8 case. An amicus curiae brief can only be submitted by someone who is not a party to the case. :-)

    Posted by: Rob | Feb 28, 2013 6:37:59 PM

  17. I found the briefs submitted by PFLAG, and by Family Equality Council et al, to be moving reading.

    Maybe it's the intervening years, but I don't remember having this sort of reaction reading the original Prop 8 amicus briefs.

    The variety, as Will said earlier, is thrilling, seeing business and conservatives join this effort in such a solid way.

    Posted by: Randy | Mar 1, 2013 3:22:04 AM

Post a comment


« «Prop 8 Attorneys Ted Olson and David Boies Ink Book Deal« «