It is being reported that the California Supreme Court has unanimously decided that pro-family citizen groups do in fact have legal standing to fight for Prop 8, a voter-approved constitutional definition of marriage as between one man and one women.
After opponents succeeded in overturning the voter-approved constitutional amendment through a sympathetic federal judge (who was gay himself), they have been attempting to shut citizen groups out of the court proceedings by arguing that the citizens have no right to fight for the new amendment. Since Prop 8 became part of the California constitution, they argued, it was up to the state to defend it. This was argued with tongue-in-cheek since it is well-known that the current governor and attorney general were in fact fighting on the side trying to nullify the vote of the people.
From the Mercury News:
Credit must be giving to these normally-liberal judges for rejecting intense political pressure and not playing along to the farce.
In a unanimous ruling, the justices sided with Proposition 8 sponsors, who've argued they should be able to appeal a federal judge's decision last year striking down the same-sex marriage ban because the governor and attorney general have refused to defend the voter-approved law. The state Supreme Court overwhelmingly agreed that Proposition 8 backers can go it alone in trying to preserve the gay marriage ban.
The Supreme Court was emphatic that it would "undermine" the California ballot initiative process if the governor and attorney general can trump the voters by declining to defend such laws in the courts.
"The inability of the official proponents of an initiative measure to appeal a trial court judgment invalidating the measure, when the public officials who ordinarily would file such an appeal decline to do so, would significantly undermine the initiative power," Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye wrote for the court. [...]
As a result, the 9th Circuit could be in a position to rule on the case fairly swiftly, as it already has been briefed and argued by both sides. The court has one fresh issue to resolve, as Proposition 8 backers have raised new arguments that Walker's ruling should be set aside because he had been in a long-term same-sex relationship at the time he held last year's historic trial in the case and therefore is presumed biased.
Chief U.S. District Judge James Ware rejected that argument earlier this year, but Proposition 8 lawyers have appealed his ruling to the 9th Circuit.
Of course,the Prop 8 issue will end up in the federal supreme court eventually anyways.
More details as they come in...
Previous Stories on the Prop 8 Saga:
Prop 8 Judge's Wife Filed Motion In The Case
Judges Picked To Review Prop 8 Are Mostly Radical Liberal
Liberal Court Blocks Gay Marriages in California
Judge Walker Infringes State Law As He Denies Right To Appeal Prop 8 Decision
Federal Tyranny Proven By Proposition 8 Overthrow
Gay Judge Overrrules Prop 8, Voter Definition of Marriage
Judge 'probably violated the constitution' to punish Prop-8 backers