Arnold: Don't Stay Prop. 8 Ruling
BY Advocate.com Editors
August 06 2010 5:55 PM ET
California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has formally opposed a move by Proposition 8 proponents to block marriages for
same-sex couples pending their appeal to the U.S. court of appeals for the ninth circuit.
"The Administration believes the public
interest is best served by permitting the Court’s judgment to go into
effect, thereby restoring the right of same-sex couples to marry in
California," attorneys representing Schwarzenegger wrote Friday afternoon to the trial court that struck down the law Wednesday. "Doing so is consistent with California’s long
history of treating all people and their relationships with equal
dignity and respect."
California attorney general Jerry Brown had also written in favor of allowing same-sex marriages to resume. Though the attorney general's office had opposed a request by plaintiffs' attorneys David Boies and Ted Olson to block Prop. 8 prior to trial, Brown wrote in a motion filed with the court Friday afternoon that "the public interest weighs against [Prop. 8's] continued enforcement" after U.S. district judge Vaughn R. Walker ruled the ballot measure unconstitutional.
"While there is still the potential for limited administrative burdens should future marriages of same-sex couples be later declared invalid, these potential burdens are outweighed by this Court’s conclusion, based on the overwhelming evidence, that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional," Brown wrote. "Accordingly, the harm to the plaintiffs outweighs any harm to the state defendants."
Prop. 8 proponents have asked for a stay of Walker's decision on the grounds that "another purported window of same-sex marriage in California would cause irreparable harm."
But attorneys challenging Prop. 8, led by Ted Olson and David Boies, wrote to the court Friday that a stay of the decision would "fly in the face of the detailed and thorough findings made by this Court just two days ago."
"[Prop. 8 proponents] cannot meet their burden of justifying the extraordinary relief of a stay," the attorneys wrote. "Indeed, [they] cannot possibly make a 'strong showing' they are likely to prevail on the merits of their appeal; they have simply repeated the very same arguments that this Court carefully considered and rejected based on a hard-fought trial, overwhelming evidence, extensive briefing, and the governing law."
Walker issued a temporary stay of the decision on Wednesday pending arguments from both sides but has not indicated when he will rule on whether to allow same-sex marriages to resume in California.