Homework for the Prop 8 Hearing Tomorrow

If you want to do a little homework to prepare for the Prop 8 hearing tomorrow, I recommend that you have a look at the papers filed by the Olson-Boies team and the proponents of Prop 8. I’m providing links below to the three key filings from AFER’s website. (AFER is the organization sponsoring the federal challenge.) The filings are probably too lengthy to read in their entirety, but you can get a gist of the arguments by reading the introductions and some of the summaries. I’ve indicated the page numbers for those sections below. Here are the briefs:

Prop 8 Proponents Opening Brief The defenders of prop 8 are looking to establish that (1) they have standing to pursue an appeal of Judge Walker’s ruling in Perry v. Schwarzenegger; (2) Imperial County (a county in Southern California east of San Diego) also has standing to pursue the appeal; and (3) Prop 8 should be upheld. The Introduction (pp. 1-8) and Summary of Argument (16-18) provide a good outline of what they are arguing.

Main Response Brief filed by the Olson-Boies team In this brief, our people are asking the court (1) to deny standing to the proponents of Prop 8 and (2) to strike down Prop 8 as unconstitutional. Pages 1-28 encompass the Introduction, the Statement of Facts and the Summary of Argument. If you only have time to read one thing, read this.

Response regarding Imperial County filed by the Olson-Boies team. This is the response to the argument that Imperial County should be permitted to pursue appeal. You might want to look at pages 1-2. They contain the Introduction and Statement of the Issues.

Although not strictly necessary for understanding what’s going on tomorrow, you should also read Judge Walker’s ruling when you can.

As a reminder, the hearings will be televised on C-SPAN at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time (1 p.m Eastern). We’ll be live-blogging them here. USC Constitutional Law scholar David Cruz will be joining us. Don’t miss it!


Liz Newcomb is an attorney by day and committed LGBT activist by night and weekend. She has worked as a researcher at the Williams Institute. While in law school at UCLA, she was Articles Editor of the LGBT law journal. Liz lives in West Hollywood with her wife, Lynne. They are one of the 18,000 California same-sex couples who got married during the summer before proposition 8 passed. Liz has lived in California for over 20 years and brings a left coast perspective to AMERICAblog.

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