CA Supreme Court Overrules Gay Marriage Ban

Gay marriage can not be prohibited in California:

The California Supreme Court has overturned a ban on gay marriage, paving the way for California to become the second state where gay and lesbian residents can marry. The justices released the 4-3 decision Thursday, saying that domestic partnerships are not a good enough substitute for marriage in an opinion written by Chief Justice Ron George.

Here is the opinion (PDF). Kevin Drum has more on an initiative being proposed to amend the California Constitution to allow such a prohibition.

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    Great Decision (5.00 / 3) (#1)
    by Athena on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:24:38 PM EST
    If gay people cannot have full constitutional rights, then they deserve a tax discount for official inequality.

    good point. (1.00 / 1) (#17)
    by thereyougo on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:39:08 PM EST
    but I would like to call them something else other than marriages,because it implies hetero style union.

    Call them legal unions or something to that effect.

    I'd just want the acrimony I've seen in gay divorces get just as nasty as hetero unions and it would be nice to see them improve on that score.


    Why? You are suggesting they aren't equal. (5.00 / 1) (#29)
    by kindness on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:04:09 PM EST
    gay divorce & tattoo removal (5.00 / 1) (#75)
    by angie on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:43:54 PM EST
    are two growth industries. ;-)

    I'm not gay but I did my thesis paper in law school on the effect of one state's allowance of gay marriage on other states (the first HI case had just been handed down -- yep, I'm old), so I'm happy with the decision today. This is the way it is going to have to work (as I predicted in my thesis) -- state by state for awhile, then on to a receptive USSC, just like in Loving v. VA (interracial marriage).


    something like Subhuman legal unions? /snark (none / 0) (#90)
    by mexboy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:11:29 PM EST
    I'm sure you don't have to take care of gay people's possible heartbreaks. They've thrived in spite of society being rigged against them. Heck, many have been killed for being gay and yet the gay community thrives.

    They'll be fine thereyougo. I suspect your reasons for posting your message are quite different, though.


    Fantastic News!!! (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by feet on earth on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:26:11 PM EST
    Congratulations to all my gay friends for their upcoming marriages in California.

    48 states to go.

    Great News (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by americanincanada on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:28:43 PM EST
    Cali is a huge state with a lot of influence...

    Newsom...Hoorah (5.00 / 4) (#7)
    by Stellaaa on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:29:15 PM EST
    Heh, Obama, you can still get the picture.  

    Thank you, Stellaaa. (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by NYCDem11 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:58:29 PM EST
    I have so enjoyed your comments over these last weeks. I needed that laugh today. Yesterday was a heartbreaker.

    Question for you Obama: How strong will your position be on gay rights? (Please don't say "present.")


    You have it wrong. (5.00 / 4) (#32)
    by ahazydelirium on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:06:37 PM EST
    No one has done more for gays than Obama. /snark

    so this is all about Obama? (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by seesdifferent on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:10:13 PM EST
    is there a thread you wouldn't hijack to attack Obama?

    No n/t (5.00 / 3) (#42)
    by samanthasmom on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:18:15 PM EST
    Funny, I just came from a thread on (none / 0) (#41)
    by ahazydelirium on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:17:38 PM EST
    another blog "hijacked" by Obama supporters claiming that this is an example why Hillary supporters have to line up behind Obama. Otherwise, if this is appealed (unlikely), it will reach the Supreme Court and McCain's judges (that haven't yet been appointed) will strike it down and destroy gay marriage forever. Fear mongering coupled with "hijacking."

    Two sides of the same coin, seesdifferent. Everyone is guilty.

    [Also, one comment with a couple replies hardly constitutes a hijacking.]


    Can't appeal to the US S.Ct. (none / 0) (#76)
    by daryl herbert on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:44:25 PM EST
    This case was about whether the California state constitution requires gay marriage.  It has nothing to do with the federal Constitution.  (That was a deliberate tactical choice of the people who brought the suit.)

    If this was appealed up to SCOTUS, there would be nothing for SCOTUS to decide.  It is not for the US S.Ct. to decide how to interpret state laws.

    Basically there's no way in hell S.Ct. would strike it down (they would have to come up with a reason like "all gay marriage is prohibited always by the US Const.," and I think none of the 9 justices are down with that)

    - - -

    One interesting point: the lawyer for California who argued in favor of the ban did a terrible job.  Really, really horrible.  I think he threw the case, on purpose or subconsciously (who wants to be known as the lawyer who prevented marriage equality?)


    Oh, I'm perfectly aware of this. (none / 0) (#81)
    by ahazydelirium on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:52:08 PM EST
    I was simply summarizing the argument of another poster. Sorry for the ambiguity.

    Holistic (none / 0) (#88)
    by Stellaaa on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:06:38 PM EST
    In an effort to highlight his "holistic" candidacy, yes, something I have heard and read numerous times, I give every opportunity to give him the credit that is due.  

    LOL n/t (none / 0) (#25)
    by MO Blue on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:56:46 PM EST
    good for the court! (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by Salo on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:30:38 PM EST

    Yipee... (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by k on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:31:40 PM EST
    I've been tryin' like crazy to get a family member of mine to move to California. I now have one more arrow in my quiver!

    Just saw that on Yahoo (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by BarnBabe on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:33:05 PM EST
    Wow, that is good for so many couples that just want to be married in order to show their committment to each other and love to the world and share the same marriage benefits afforded to other couples. Personally, marriages can be good and many bad. In as much as I won't be having children, the piece of paper is not as important to me, but, I am not saying I will never marry again. Right now, my BF would be astounded at the money I give to causes and Hillary. So being independent gives me that luxury. Heh.

    Some great language in the decision (5.00 / 4) (#16)
    by fuzzyone on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:38:47 PM EST
    I'm still reading (172 pages with the dissents) but here is one nice bit

    Finally, retaining the designation of marriage exclusively for opposite sex couples and providing only a separate and distinct designation for same-sex couples may well have the effect of perpetuating a more general premise -- now emphatically rejected by this state -- that gay individuals and same-sex couples are in some respects "second-class citizens" who may, under the law, be treated differently from, and less favorably than, heterosexual individuals or opposite-sex couples. Under these circumstances, we cannot find that retention of the traditional definition of marriage constitutes a compelling state interest. Accordingly, we conclude that to the extent the current California statutory provisions limit marriage to opposite-sex couples, these statutes are unconstitutional

    That is great. (none / 0) (#18)
    by Maria Garcia on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:41:47 PM EST
    Interesting... (none / 0) (#24)
    by Alec82 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:56:31 PM EST
    ...I haven't read the decision yet, but it doesn't sound like a rational basis test was applied, from that quote...

    Indeed (5.00 / 2) (#59)
    by eric on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:34:50 PM EST
    we conclude that sexual orientation should be viewed as a suspect classification for purposes of the California Constitution's equal protection clause and that statutes that treat persons differently because of their sexual orientation should be subjected to strict scrutiny under this constitutional provision.

    Sweet, strict scrutiny it is.


    Welcome to the party CA (5.00 / 2) (#20)
    by CST on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:43:27 PM EST
    Now if only other states would get on board!

    They're leading the way... (none / 0) (#33)
    by madamab on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:06:48 PM EST
    and the federal government needs to get on board!

    Yay California!


    Between this (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by ahazydelirium on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:11:05 PM EST
    and the push for environmental protections, California is really starting to lead the way towards a progressive political future.

    All due respect to CA (none / 0) (#62)
    by CST on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:35:16 PM EST
    MASS led the way, they're just following :)

    But it sure does help to get a big state on board.


    I meant the states, not CA. :-) (none / 0) (#78)
    by madamab on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:48:03 PM EST
    I do think CA is a great addition.

    My state, New York, has legal civil unions for same-sex couples. Unfortunately, they do not confer the same rights as "marriage" does. It's very odd, but my hubby and I got married at the JOP (technically a civil union) but are considered "married," where as our friends Gary and John who also got hitched at the JOP, are NOT considered "married" in terms of legal benefits and assumptions.

    IMHO the problem is the definition of the words "civil unions." Too many people invest the word "marriage" with a religious connotation and that freaks them out when it comes to GLBT folks doing it. We should just say a "civil union" is legally equivalent to "marriage," but without the religious component. Then, let GLBT folks get civil unions. Everybody's equal and happy.



    Oh definitely (none / 0) (#89)
    by CST on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:07:02 PM EST
    States are waaay ahead (at least some states) on Gay marriage, the environment, etc....

    I have no problem with the term "civil union" as long as all the rights are there and they get treated the same by the government.  I think compromising on the term in order to get the benefits is okay.  Although changing the word does seem to imply that they are not equal.

    Things like this make me proud of my country, if only they would happen more often.


    A couple of observations. First, Kenneth (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by oculus on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:45:30 PM EST
    Starr represented Latter Day Saints as amicus to defendant State of California.  Second:  wait for the recall petitions re George et al.  If that gets on the Nov. ballot, the Republicans will be out in droves.

    The Latter Day Saints and (none / 0) (#28)
    by bjorn on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:59:34 PM EST
    Kenneth Star, some how they deserve each other.  I am celebrating tonight!!!

    Great News. (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by Marco21 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:04:21 PM EST
    If you're into that. By 'that' I mean marriage.

    wow (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by Jlvngstn on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:04:44 PM EST
    now that is awesome!

    I am so happy!! (5.00 / 2) (#36)
    by BethanyAnne on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:11:48 PM EST
    We can be treated just like everyone else!  I called a couple of my friends and asked when the weddings are.  happy dance

    yeah (5.00 / 2) (#44)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:21:20 PM EST
    I just talked to a couple of friends who are setting a date.

    wow (5.00 / 2) (#37)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:15:23 PM EST
    this is great news for all us Gs and Ls but I wonder how great the news is for the chances of Obama taking CA in the fall.
    if this becomes a ballot thing it could drive conservative turnout way up.

    How come this ALWAYS happens. . . (none / 0) (#60)
    by LarryInNYC on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:34:58 PM EST
    in the summer of an election year?

    honestly (none / 0) (#64)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:35:51 PM EST
    at some point you begin to wonder if this is the only they can win elections.

    Don't forget the initiatives on (none / 0) (#65)
    by oculus on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:38:27 PM EST
    eminent domain, rent control, etc.

    I worried (none / 0) (#118)
    by BethanyAnne on Thu May 15, 2008 at 05:55:32 PM EST
    about the same thing.  But I think this isn't 2004.  Conservatives will try to use this to stir up the idjits, well, I should say they already are trying.  But this really is a Democratic year.  So many conservatives hate McCain that I think lots of them won't bother showing up just to vote us off their island. /hopes

    Great news (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by ruffian on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:16:20 PM EST
    today, but it will make the porposition a bigger issue in Npvember, and get those McCain voters out in force. I think this is one reason why he is more confident than most Republicans going into California.

    Awesome! But GOP turnout in CA just went up (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by davnee on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:16:42 PM EST
    for Nov.  And who else puts money down that HRC will have a better response to this than Obama (if he has any)?

    Well, he has McClurkin. (5.00 / 2) (#45)
    by oculus on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:22:53 PM EST
    And HIllary has Doug Coe (1.00 / 1) (#101)
    by HelenK on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:43:47 PM EST
    I am pretty sure that the Fellowship doesn't approve.

    No information about Coe. Has he (5.00 / 1) (#107)
    by oculus on Thu May 15, 2008 at 03:30:13 PM EST
    campaigned with Hillary Clinton?

    Obama was warned about McClurkin's (5.00 / 1) (#124)
    by Joelarama on Thu May 15, 2008 at 11:47:53 PM EST
    anti-gay "reparative therapy" crusading.  He ignored those warnings, called McClurkin one of his and Michelle's favorite singers, and allowed him to have a key role in his event in South Carolina.  McClurkin then went on an anti-gay tirade from the stage.

    Obama did not apologize after the concert; instead his campaign sent out a mailer that said McClurkin had no problem with "happy gays."

    The equivalency you draw is ridiculous and offensive.


    You're assuming that it gets on the ballot (none / 0) (#46)
    by s5 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:23:58 PM EST
    It may get beaten back before then. It happens sometimes.

    if this becomes a ballot prop (none / 0) (#53)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:31:12 PM EST
    prepare for beneath the bus

    Nah, (none / 0) (#73)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:42:47 PM EST
    go ahead and kneel down and wait for the obama bus to run over you.

    Schwarzenegger said he'll fight ban (none / 0) (#111)
    by cmugirl on Thu May 15, 2008 at 03:43:23 PM EST
    yeah saw that (none / 0) (#113)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 05:14:10 PM EST
    the question is where will Obama be.

    Obama doesn't believe in gay marriage (5.00 / 1) (#119)
    by cmugirl on Thu May 15, 2008 at 07:36:22 PM EST
    "Barack Obama has always believed that same-sex couples should enjoy equal rights under the law, and he will continue to fight for civil unions as President. He respects the decision of the California Supreme Court, and continues to believe that states should make their own decisions when it comes to the issue of marriage."



    Oh man (5.00 / 3) (#50)
    by Steve M on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:29:34 PM EST
    My condolences to gay folks everywhere.

    For shame, Steve! (none / 0) (#94)
    by cmugirl on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:17:07 PM EST
    I'm telling your wife!  :)

    Uh-oh! (none / 0) (#96)
    by Steve M on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:22:51 PM EST
    In truth, I am very happily married, but I still feel obligated to whine about it for some reason.

    Whew! (none / 0) (#99)
    by cmugirl on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:28:25 PM EST
    I'm glad I don't have to tell her now so you don't have to get hurt!  



    rofl n/t (none / 0) (#117)
    by BethanyAnne on Thu May 15, 2008 at 05:52:45 PM EST
    Great News (5.00 / 2) (#52)
    by squeaky on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:30:40 PM EST
    Now all Californians can enjoy in the 50% US divorce rate.

    I think I read (none / 0) (#56)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:34:14 PM EST
    that in MA the divorce rate is much higher for heteros.
    not good for propaganda.

    Give them time (none / 0) (#68)
    by CST on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:40:16 PM EST
    I'm sure they'll catch up eventually, they're still pretty much in the honeymoon period :).

    On another note, it is also very hard for out of state residents who married in MA to get a divorce.  Apparently they have really strict divorce laws here.


    I thought that in the blue states (5.00 / 1) (#87)
    by madamab on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:04:59 PM EST
    divorce rates were, in general, lower than in the red states. Yet another ironic "family values" statistic. ;-)

    That Is True (none / 0) (#114)
    by squeaky on Thu May 15, 2008 at 05:23:38 PM EST
    The Full Faith and Credit Clause... (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by mike in dc on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:33:31 PM EST
    ...and the 14th Amendment will be put through the wringer when all this winds up at the Supreme Court a few years down the road.  

    If the Court rules that other states don't have to honor legal marriages recognized in several, it will be remembered along with the Dred Scott decision as one of the supremely bad SC rulings of its existence.

    Hm (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by Steve M on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:40:34 PM EST
    States have never been required to recognize marriages that violate their public policy.  For example, if a state decides to let you marry your sister, other states are not required to recognize that marriage if they don't want to.  This case law long predates any concern over gay marriage.

    well (none / 0) (#74)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:43:15 PM EST
    at one point blacks and whites were not allowed to marry in every state and they were forced to.

    Yes (none / 0) (#83)
    by Steve M on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:54:14 PM EST
    But that was an issue of racial equality under the 14th Amendment.  The argument gets tougher when race isn't the issue.

    My thinking is... (none / 0) (#93)
    by mike in dc on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:16:43 PM EST
    ...that by the time this gets to the Supremes, SSM will be the law of the land in at least a half dozen states.  It will be framed as an equal protection issue, and the liberal wing of the Court(such as it is) will cite evolving social consciousness as part of the reason for including orientation for consideration under the 14th Amendment.

    "it will be remembered" (none / 0) (#61)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:35:01 PM EST
    probably long after we are all dead.

    Well I can marry (5.00 / 2) (#72)
    by facta non verba on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:42:13 PM EST
    I wonder who will propose, Paul or me.

    There are no words. Thank you Gavin Newsome.

    And we have universal health care in San Francisco thanks to Gavin Newsome. It can be done. All it takes is leadership. Barack Obama lacks that quality.

    not to be picky (none / 0) (#77)
    by Katherine Graham Cracker on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:47:53 PM EST
    Tom Ammiano gets at least half the credit for the city's health care plan.  

    Mayor Newsom congratulations for standing up to the bigots in 2004 when others were silent.  And for seeing the issue through.  


    sigh (none / 0) (#86)
    by boredmpa on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:59:54 PM EST
    I didn't know the plan was up and running (it had been challenged), had a condom breakage, couldn't afford PEP, and no one told me.  They don't even mention any financial assistance on the CDC/cityclinic sites.  God I hate lazy bureaucrats...lets hope I'm not another poor person statistic.

    I agree (none / 0) (#112)
    by facta non verba on Thu May 15, 2008 at 04:24:30 PM EST
    there are many who deserve credit for the SF Health Plan. And Ammiano deserves the lion's share because he has been on this for 10 years. And while Willie Brown never jumped on it, Gavin Newsom did. That's leadership.

    I am so proud of my mayor and at 5PM there is going to be a march from the Castro to City Hall. Meet at the Octavia LGBT center on Market Street. It's a hot day in San Franciso, perfect weather for a march and a party.


    YaY for California! (5.00 / 1) (#80)
    by LoisInCo on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:51:39 PM EST
    Now it needs to spread to the rest of us, because I really don't want to move back to CA.

    exactly. (none / 0) (#85)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:58:57 PM EST
    "It's about time" says Newsom (5.00 / 1) (#95)
    by Katherine Graham Cracker on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:19:18 PM EST
    Newsom press conference

    "As California goes so goes the nation."
    "This is the future...courts across the country are waking up

    Congratulations to my friend and former colleague (5.00 / 1) (#103)
    by riddlerandy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:46:52 PM EST
    Terry Stewart who argued this case for San Francisco!

    This is very exciting- as I gay man, I now (5.00 / 1) (#104)
    by kenosharick on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:50:54 PM EST
    have full rights in two states; only 48 to go. I only hope there is not a backlash such as what happened in 2004.

    One more sign things are changing... (none / 0) (#108)
    by CST on Thu May 15, 2008 at 03:35:09 PM EST
    This year, in MA, they couldn't even get enough signatures for the legislature to review the law.  I think it's the first time since Gay Marriage was allowed that it hasn't been brought to the legislature.  Luckily, every time in the past the legislature shot down anything proposing to define marriage as between a "man and a woman".  Still the fact that they couldn't get the signatures this year is a good sign that people are starting to accept it.  The sky hasn't fallen down on us yet :).

    WoooHoooo!!!!! (4.66 / 3) (#21)
    by Marvin42 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:43:55 PM EST
    I am originally from CA and I am very proud of my home state today...

    And I am very proud (5.00 / 3) (#82)
    by vigkat on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:52:14 PM EST
    of my court.  I witnessed all the happy couples lining up around the block to make their way into City Hall when Newsom opened the doors for gay marriages. I had a perfect view from my office window on the sixth floor of the court that issued today's opinion, where I spent 17 years as a staff attorney.  It has been a long journey and a difficult case for the court (I'm retired and had no involvement with this case). Kudos to the Chief Justice and the justices who concurred in the opinion.  I can't say that I'm surprised.

    CNN initially got it wrong (none / 0) (#3)
    by akaEloise on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:26:21 PM EST
    They only read the first few lines of the opinion, which restated the earlier case that declared San Francisco's 2004 actions unlawful pending this larger decision.  So CNN actually announced that the court found same-sex marriage unconstitutional.   They've been trying to play catch-up since.  

    So can California (none / 0) (#4)
    by andgarden on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:27:14 PM EST
    stop the proposition. . .? My guess is no.

    The idea that you should be able to amend the constitution of a state by initiative seems immensely silly to me. I am disappointed that it is possible in so many states.

    Is there a higher threshold (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by HelenK on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:36:26 PM EST
    that has to be met to actually amend the constitution? Like 66% at least?

    It does seem really wrong to amend a constitution by majority vote. Really wrong.


    Majority. (none / 0) (#43)
    by oculus on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:20:31 PM EST
    majority only and yes, it's wrong (none / 0) (#49)
    by s5 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:26:19 PM EST
    Not to mention, stupid. :)

    That said, I doubt it will pass. By November there will be too many forces working against it, including our own Republican governor.


    I actually hate the CA (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Stellaaa on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:38:26 PM EST
    propositions.  I am sick of them.  I want the legislators to be held accountable.  What business do  voters have voting on tax policy and government regulations.  The state is a mess cause of the propositions.  

    One of the less wise (none / 0) (#19)
    by andgarden on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:42:27 PM EST
    "progressive reforms." That and Prohibition top the list IMO. Also the recall.

    I agree. (none / 0) (#23)
    by thereyougo on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:54:37 PM EST
    Whenever they can't get legislation passed , because it would take the grunt work of compromise to find workable solutions, I have to vote for it at the next election.It begs the question, what the hell we got the legislators for?

    and they gathered signatures for this initiative through robo calls. Its the new way they gather support of people instead from gathering signatures at malls and public places. They then called me and  send a form for you to sign.

    I almost signed it, but changed my mind.


    Heh (none / 0) (#66)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:39:06 PM EST
    You should see what we have to vote on down here in GA. One time it was something about blueberry farms. Another time it was about tourist fishing. Honestly, sometimes I wonder why do we have these people if we are going to make all the decisions.

    Realistically, though, in GA we DON'T have any. It's an absolute confederacy of dunces with the gov., speaker and senate leader duking it out publicly and on a daily basis. One year they spent the entire year trying to agree on a budget. The Gov. had to extend the budget deadline because the idiots couldn't come up with anything. The session went WEEKS over!!

    If anybody thinks they've got morons running their state I challenge them to compare with the ones we have running GA. Truly, I don't imagine there are many worse.


    My dad lives in Rome, GA (none / 0) (#105)
    by Dadler on Thu May 15, 2008 at 03:03:41 PM EST
    And I can attest to your statements.  As an 80+ year-old lower east side New York Jew living in Dixie, well, let's just say he's gotten an entirely new perspective on government.  He's also the only regular contributor to his local newspaper who doesn't have his picture printed with his columns.  For safety purposes.

    I'm with you on that (none / 0) (#27)
    by s5 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:59:27 PM EST
    I think the voters are sick of them too. Is it just my imagination or are most of them getting voted down reflexively?

    Anyway, I'm pretty thrilled about this. I'm in a (straight) marriage, living in San Francisco, and it completely boggles my mind why my neighbors who have been in loving relationships for decades can't get married. But now they can!


    Prop 215 (none / 0) (#51)
    by s5 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:30:22 PM EST
    On the other hand, whenever I begin to hate on our proposition system, I always remember that it gave us prop 215, the country's first medical marijuana law. Is it worth having the proposition system around so the people can act on progressive reforms that legislators are too timid to take a stand on? It's a tough call.

    Not worth it ... (5.00 / 1) (#58)
    by Alec82 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:34:40 PM EST
    ...because for every 1 good law you get 10 bad ones.  Additionally, even "good" initiatives (like med marijuana) are often deeply flawed in design. A better option is to require a supermajority (sixty percent or more) or a quorum (over fifty percent of all registered voters) or two successive votes (as in NV) to amend the state constitution.

     California is one of the most dysfunctional state governments I have ever seen.  The state functions in spite of its government, which is something that you don't get to say all that often.  


    after 15 years in CA (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:41:27 PM EST
    I absolutely completely agree.
    the whole prop thing is totally out of controll and should be stopped.
    it is goverment by mob.

    You, madam, are defiling the legacy (none / 0) (#57)
    by oculus on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:34:34 PM EST
    of Hiram Johnson.

    It's especially bad in California because (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by shoephone on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:32:53 PM EST
    only a simple majority is needed there to amend the constitution, instead of the 2/3 supermajority required in other states.

    No sense letting voters decide, (3.00 / 2) (#11)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:34:45 PM EST

    That democracy stuff is just too much for some folks.  Perhaps amending a constitution should be limited to a junta.

    You must be a Commie (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:36:08 PM EST
    and hate America and its Constitution.

    heh (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by andgarden on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:38:17 PM EST
    Right (none / 0) (#63)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:35:17 PM EST

    That "consent of the governed" biz is just for show.

    Conservatives for majority tyrrany (none / 0) (#67)
    by andgarden on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:39:35 PM EST
    the world turned on its head.

    It's not unconditional, (none / 0) (#121)
    by coigue on Thu May 15, 2008 at 11:19:55 PM EST

    Having been one of the kids who (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by inclusiveheart on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:25:22 PM EST
    grew up under Proposition 13 in CA and having seen what happened to my friends whose parents couldn't afford to send them to private school as the public system imploded - I am not a fan of the proposition system in CA at all.  People are too easily manipulated on complex issues - some of which have very bad long-term consequences - like destroying the public education system in favor of low property taxes - to make these "yes" or "no" votes valid in my mind.  It would be fine if the electorate were adequately informed and really understood the issues at stake, but too often they are not.

    Bill of Rights Anyone??? (none / 0) (#120)
    by coigue on Thu May 15, 2008 at 11:17:14 PM EST
    The unpopular are still guaranteed equal rights under the constitution...even if the voters are against them

    Still Some Sanity In The Court System I See (none / 0) (#5)
    by PssttCmere08 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 12:27:39 PM EST
    not enough, but it's a start.

    Congratulations! (none / 0) (#40)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:16:50 PM EST
    to those who can benefit from this ruling.  Kudos to CA.

    Really good news (none / 0) (#47)
    by cawaltz on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:24:30 PM EST
    I am happy for my homosexual brothers and sisters in California today. It's great that their relationships will be recognized as equal by the government. Here's to hoping the rest of the states with challenges are equally successful and we can put this arcane idea that being different and a minority means you aren't afforded equal protection under the law.

    Great day (none / 0) (#71)
    by txpolitico67 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:41:50 PM EST
    for the GLBT community.  However, the gay marriage issue will get all the R's/evangelicals to come out in droves this fall and REALLY put CA in play if Obama is the nominee.

    I know it won't be on the ballot but it will harden people's feelings about it and vote against anything progressive.

    isn't it sad (none / 0) (#79)
    by boredmpa on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:48:57 PM EST
    that the first thought that went through my mind was:

    "yay, i could conceivably afford healthcare if i get married"

    this is great news, but class trumps orientation for me (why isn't the CA universal care bill passed yet???) and i'm more concerned about death due to lack of access to preventive care.

    The universal healthcare bill died (none / 0) (#92)
    by Prabhata on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:15:24 PM EST
    The Democrats wanted "single payer" bill, but the governor didn't agree.

    AWESOME n/t (none / 0) (#84)
    by rilkefan on Thu May 15, 2008 at 01:54:19 PM EST

    Great decision (none / 0) (#91)
    by Prabhata on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:13:17 PM EST
    It's a step in the right direction. I'm happy that the gays will be able to divorce just like everyone else.  Nevertheless, he next step will have to deal with the children issue because gays can have children not fathered by the partner.  I think that's a can of worms that will impact gays and heterosexuals.

    I think children in general (none / 0) (#100)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:36:44 PM EST
    are a can of worms.
    but thats just me.

    not all children (none / 0) (#123)
    by coigue on Thu May 15, 2008 at 11:26:10 PM EST
    just boys. ;-)

    Adoption laws (none / 0) (#102)
    by HelenK on Thu May 15, 2008 at 02:46:35 PM EST
    can clear that up I think, as long as the state allows gay adoption, and if they allow gay marriage, they should also allow gay adoption.

    Adam, Steve ... where do I send the blendahhh ?? (none / 0) (#106)
    by Ellie on Thu May 15, 2008 at 03:17:22 PM EST
    I love it when another state knocks down bigotry. Human rights victories always leave me teary eyed.

    And excuse me, weddings always were a matrix of raw gayness waiting to happen. The only mystery is why it took CA so long.

    (I can just see that as part of the arguments: a lawyer waving menus, themes and swatches for the Court. "Justices, with this running rampant through our culture, not only could Adam and Steve argue that they were encouraged but perhaps downright coerced to go all the way!")

    When Mayor Newsome started allowing (5.00 / 1) (#110)
    by allimom99 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 03:42:17 PM EST
    the marriage licenses, my idea was to promote SF as a tourist destination (wedding PLUS honeymoon etc.) for gay couples. As my mother used to say, "why have the name and not the game". Why indeed. Congratulations to all!

    I was pleasantly surprised to read (none / 0) (#109)
    by allimom99 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 03:38:44 PM EST
    that the Governator said he would NOT support a constitutional amendment that overturned the court. I applaud him for that, but he HAS had 2 chances to sign same sex marriage bills. Still, any help against the bigots is welcome, and he'll be termed out anyway, so why not?

    To be fair to the governator... (none / 0) (#116)
    by Alec82 on Thu May 15, 2008 at 05:47:23 PM EST
    ...according to the Cal Supremes, the legislation would have been invalid because of the initiative that was passed in 2000.  They invalidated that initiative, but they did not accept the argument (made by the state legislature) that the initiative only prevented California from recognizing marriages performed in other jurisdictions.  

     What is remarkable about this opinion is that the court applied strict scrutiny (a first for sexual orientation, I believe, at the appellate level).  And it did so in a situation where gay and lesbian couples already had the rights of marriage.


    OK (none / 0) (#115)
    by IzikLA on Thu May 15, 2008 at 05:24:40 PM EST
    VERY excited about this, especially as a gay man in Los Angeles.  

    However, we need to be very careful.  It is almost certain that because of this there will now be an initiative on the ballot in November trying to  adjust the law so that only a man and woman can be married.  Even in California this would be closely contested and could bring a huge amount of Republicans to the polls.  Fortunately, our Republican governor opposes a change to the constitution, but even so it could bring out a lot of Republicans in November to vote against it.  My concern is how this will effect the presidential election, especially assuming Obama is the nominee and knowing that McCain has tremendously popularity within the latino community, a huge segment of California's voters.

    We CAN'T lose California in the presidential election because of this.   I do think this is great for the country though, so I will do everything in my personal power to see it happen and not let it affect the presidential election.

    If Obama/or Hil (none / 0) (#122)
    by coigue on Thu May 15, 2008 at 11:24:54 PM EST
    skirts the issue...we do bad. If they tackle it head on as LEADERS with CONFIDENCE that it is the right thing to do.....everyone wins and the GOP can no longer use it against us.

    I think you need to chill re: Republicans. (none / 0) (#127)
    by BrandingIron on Fri May 16, 2008 at 01:13:13 AM EST

    As a bi man in SF, I just watched the news.  Like you mentioned, Republican Governor Arnold says he will NOT support an amendment that would overturn this decision, and Arnie supports McCain.  It was a Republican dominated court that decided this decision for the GLBTs.  California Republicans aren't exactly the root of all evil.

    Statewide poll, though. (none / 0) (#125)
    by BrandingIron on Fri May 16, 2008 at 01:07:56 AM EST
    46% said they agree

    46% said they disagree


    This is why I talk about the possibility of the state (the WHOLE state) going red.  The Governator, who supports McCain, also says he agree with the decision (and you wonder why he's popular).

    The Bay Area polling was of course better

    60% said they agree
    40-something % said they disagree

    CBS News 5 just reported such.

    P.S. (none / 0) (#126)
    by BrandingIron on Fri May 16, 2008 at 01:10:16 AM EST

    It was a Republican dominated court that decided this decision.  Californians don't seem to despise Republicans as much as the lefty blogosphere does.  Obama needs to watch out if he's the nom.

    P.P.S. (none / 0) (#128)
    by BrandingIron on Fri May 16, 2008 at 01:22:20 AM EST

    I can see it now, in the GE if Obama is the nominee.  McCain'll use "Obama didn't want to be seen posing for a picture with the "gay marriage mayor"!" to win over the fencesitters who don't think either way about McCain or Obama.

    It'd be even better icing on the cake if McCain posed for a picture with Gavin Newsom (and Arnie) with some comments about the Republicans being the "true uniters".  HA HA...oooooh, how awesome that would be to witness.