Bench Memos

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Supreme Court Blocks Broadcasting of Anti-Prop 8 Trial


According to Lyle Denniston on SCOTUSblog, the Supreme Court, following up on its earlier interim order, has just issued an order barring broadcasting of the anti-Proposition 8 trial in California.  The vote was 5 to 4.

I’ll have more to say on the broader ramifications of this order once I’ve reviewed it and the accompanying opinion.  For now, I’ll just observe that this is a significant, and well-deserved, victory for counsel for the sponsors of Proposition 8, led by Charles J. Cooper of Cooper & Kirk. 

Update:  I’ve now read the excellent per curiam majority opinion.  The majority (the Chief Justice and Justices Scalia, Kennedy, Thomas, and Alito) rules that Judge Walker’s broadcast order should be stayed “because it appears the courts below did not follow the appropriate procedures set forth in federal law before changing their rules to allow such broadcasting” and because irreparable harm would result from the denial of the stay.  I’m pleased to say that the Court’s analysis is very much along the lines that I’ve spelled out in my recent NRO essay—“Staging a Show Trial on Same-Sex Marriage”—and in my Bench Memos posts.  (Those lines were, of course, developed much more elaborately in the brief filed by counsel for the sponsors of Proposition 8.)

Tags: Whelan


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