Prop. 8 Backers Cover Their Asses
What this means: The defense is requesting that, should the state law barring same-sex marriage be declared unconstitutional today -- which the defense is apparently bracing for -- that Californians should not be able run out and have a same-sex marriage tomorrow. "A stay is essential to averting the harms that would flow from another purported window of same-sex marriage in California," reads yesterday's motion.
The pro-Prop. 8 forces argue in part for the stay by declaring their likelihood of prevailing on appeal -- also a strong indicator they are conceding this round.
Should same-sex couples be free marry tomorrow, "irreparable harm" would result. "Same-sex marriages would be licensed under a cloud of uncertainty, and should Proponents succeed on appeal, any such marriages would be invalid ab initio." ("from the beginning" in Latin). This situation, the Prop.8 backers argue, would be akin to San Francisco's issuing of 4,000 same-sex marriage licenses in 2004 the state later ruled it was unauthorized to do. "Repeating that experience would inflict harm on the affected couples and place administrative burdens on the State."
Walker will issue his long-anticipated ruling sometime between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. today. It is uncertain whether or not he will grant this stay -- though legal scholars SF Weekly has spoken with have predicted same-sex marriage will remain in limbo until a final ruling from the Supreme Court. Years from now.
You can read the motion for a stay here: 705-main.pdf
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