Constitutionality of Prop 8 Questioned

Posted by:   CotoBlogzz | 11/17/2008 6:oo PM

Cases seeking to invalidate Proposition 8 are Strauss v. Horton, S168047; City and County of San Francisco v. Horton, S168078; and Tyler v. State of California, S168066.

The five official Proponents of Proposition 8, along with the - Yes on 8 campaign, today filed legal papers with the California Supreme Court asking the Court to accept original jurisdiction of three lawsuits challenging the measure’s validity, seeking to intervene in the lawsuits as Real Parties In Interest, and urging the Supreme Court to reject a stay of the initiative.

In calling for the Supreme Court to take original jurisdiction of three challenges to Proposition 8,  the said in legal papers, “The people of California are entitled to a prompt resolution of whether Proposition 8 properly amended their Constitution.  Proposition 8 was the subject of a vigorous and expensive campaign that generated an intense debate and very strong feelings on both sides.  The people have a right to know as quickly as possible the status and definition of marriage under the California Constitution.”

The  told the Court that a stay of Proposition 8 would undermine the preeminence of the Constitution as the ultimate expression of the people’s will. “Enjoining or staying the enforcement of Proposition 8 - as if it were a mere statute or municipal ordinance to be set aside by the judiciary pending further proceedings, rather than a presumptively valid expression of the people’s sovereign will - would be widely perceived as the judiciary ignoring or countermanding the supremacy of the Constitution and silencing the voice of the people on a vitally important matter of public policy.  That would be deeply harmful to the democratic process.”

Further,  the  argued in court papers that their fundamental rights as initiative proponents are at stake. As official proponents, the five authors of Proposition 8 have a unique legal position that requires legal representation separate from that provided voters by Attorney General Jerry Brown.  The motion to Intervene noted that Brown has vigorously opposed Proposition 8 and cannot be counted on to vigorously defend the measure. Additionally, the  noted  that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger similarly cannot be counted on to defend the People’s vote since he has already publicly urged the Supreme Court to invalidate Proposition 8.

The whole point of the direct democracy is for the people to be able to pass laws despite opposition from government leaders.  the  concludes that “it just makes no sense that we should have to rely solely on hostile government leaders to defend the will of the people when they opposed the measure in the first place.”

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