SCOTUS Won't Make Gay Marriage a Constitutional Right: Damon Root on Prop. 8 Oral Arguments

"The Supreme Court seems to think that the backers of [California's] Proposition 8 don't have the standing to bring this case, which would send the case back to the district courts," says Reason's Damon Root, who attended today's oral arguments for one of the most-watched cases in years.

Hollingsworth v. Perry deals with a ballot initiative passed with 52 percent of the vote in 2008 that bars the Golden State from recognizing same-sex marriage. "That would mean one of two things: We could have gay marriage in California but nowhere else, or the ruling could be limited just to the two same-sex couples that brought the case."

Root, who writes frequently about legal issues, sat down with Reason magazine's Matt Welch to discuss how he thinks the justices will rule based on today's proceedings.

About 5.30 minutes. Camera by Jim Epstein and Joshua Swain, and edited by Epstein.

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  • John||

    Okay, how sweet with the progtard tears be if Ginsburg is the one who votes to uphold Prop 8 and DOMA? They are already wishing her an early death.

  • Tony||

    Why don't you hold your breath on that one.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Regardless of what I think of the case, Supreme Court justices have to be the laziest fucks in the entire federal government.

  • ||

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Moreover, when Attorney Cooper said that gay marriage could harm the moral fabric of the country and hurt the institution of marriage, Associate Justice Sotomayor asked, “What are you even talking about?” while Justice Anthony Kennedy reportedly muttered, “You got to be fucking kidding me,” under his breath.

    It's the PG13 version of SugarFree's SOCTUS short story. (Which, if any of you are unfamiliar, be thankful.)

  • ||

    Um... which of SugarFree's SCOTUS stories are you referring to?

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  • Brett L||

    Yup. I don't give a shit about my "friends'" gesture to feel self-righteous.

  • ||

    Ugh, am I going to have to log in to FB today to know what y'all are talking about?

  • ||

    You're gonna see lots of red equals signs.

  • Loki||

    Who gives a flying fuck?

  • cavalier973||

    ....gay acrobats?

  • d_remington||

    Correction: the SCOTUS doesn't have the fucking authority to make anything a constitutional right.

  • Old Dave||

    Precisely.

    On a lighter note, Damon's hot!

  • ||

    That kinda sucks for gay marriage supporters since no form of marriage is enumerated in the constitution and the un-enumerated powers are left to the states and the people, respectively.

  • Pippers||

    Not really, if they find DOMA unconstitutional, then states laws will also have to fall off the cart as well. The constitution will trump those laws.

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  • ||

    The CA propositions are intended as a means for popular sentiment in California to circumvent the entrenched interests of the political class. It defeats the purpose of popular initiatives if the political class can effective defeat a successful initiative and thwart the will of the people merely by choosing not to defend it. Regardless of your position on gay marriage, we should be bother by the procedure if standing is denied and no one is permitted to defend the will of the voters when the will of the voters conflicts with the desires of the political class.

    I am not saying that CA state official should be forced to defend a law that they honestly think is unconstitutional, but their failure to defend a successful ballot initiative should open up standing to anyone interested in the outcome -- the ballot sponsors or any Californian, for that matter.

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