Posted By Eric Ethington on August 12, 2010
California – Judge Walker’s decision today to over ride the Stay (albeit with a short waiting period) included some very particular language which has legal experts thinking that Prop 8 proponents may not even be able to appeal his decision. Prop 8 could be gone permanently!
Judge Walker casts serious doubt on whether the proponents of Prop 8 even have “standing” to pursue an appeal because they do not speak for the state of California, and the official representatives of the state agree that Prop 8 is unconstitutional. Standing refers to whether a particular person has a legal right to bring an appeal. In his ruling today, Judge Walker said: “As it appears at least doubtful that proponents will be able to proceed with their appeal without a state defendant, it remains unclear whether the court of appeals will be able to reach the merits of proponents’ appeal.”
That would mean that Judge Walker’s decision would go into effect and could not be appealed. Same-sex couples in California would once again be able to marry, and Prop 8 would be permanently struck down.
Who gets to decide whether the proponents of Prop 8 have standing to appeal?
The Ninth Circuit will have the first chance to rule on that issue. No matter which way the Ninth Circuit rules, either side could appeal that decision to the United States Supreme Court. The Supreme Court can then choose whether to rule on the issue or let the Ninth Circuit’s decision stand.