In what appears to be a last-gasp effort to save Proposition 8, same-sex marriage opponents have asked the California Supreme Court to immediately ban county clerks from issuing marriage licenses to gay couples.
The Supreme Court’s response? Make your argument — quickly.
The high court ordered Governor Jerry Brown to file his opposition to ProtectMarriage’s request for an immediate stay by 8 p.m. Friday. As in tonight. ProtectMarriage must respond by 9 a.m. Monday. The court gave the governor another week to answer the remainder of ProtectMarriage’s 50-page petition. The petitioners’ reply deadline is Aug. 1.
The Prop 8 supporters say “at least” 56 of California’s 58 county clerks are still barred from issuing licenses to same-sex couples because they were not parties in the recently decided federal lawsuit. Prop 8 backers also say Brown and Attorney General Kamala Harris had no authority to tell the clerks to start authorizing the unions.
“We are asking California’s Supreme Court to restore the rule of law and the public’s confidence in the integrity of the initiative process,” ProtectMarriage attorney Andrew Pugno said in a prepared statement.
A spokesman for Harris declined to comment Friday afternoon.
Horvitz & Levy of counsel Jon Eisenberg, an appellate expert, did not give Prop 8 supporters much chance of prevailing with their current argument.
“It is extremely rare for the California Supreme Court to grant a writ petition in the first instance, and it’s not likely to happen here,” he said.