Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Same-sex marriage in California

A three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco heard oral arguments Monday in a case, Perry v. Schwarzenegger, involving California’s ban against same-sex marriage. In the November 2008 elections, California voters approved Proposition 8, an amendment to California’s Constitution that limits marriage to a man and a woman. The Circuit Court is faced with two questions: one on the merits of the case (whether California's Proposition 8 which limits marriage to heterosexual couples violates the Constitution) and the second procedural (who has legal standing to appeal the decision of the lower court).
PBS's Newshour presents a good introduction to the question with commentary and video extracts from the courtroom. The video can be found here. There is also an .mp3 version of the story.
5 min 48 sec, transcript available.
The video of full arguments before the 9th Circuit on C-Span is here.
2 hr. 32 min., no transcript

On Monday, NPR's All Things Considered had two separate stories about the case here (3 min 28 sec) and here (starts at 1:10 min on this link  - 3 min 10 sec) transcripts available soon

For help in following the story, Slate, an online magazine, has two commentaries.  Standing on Its Head by law professor Walter Dellinger examines the procedural angle, and Gay Marriage Has a Good Day in Court by Emily Bazelon discusses the constitutional question.