Proposition 8 Legal Battles Intensify with Briefings Filed with CA Supreme Court
California Attorney General Jerry Brown made public his opposition to Proposition 8 Friday in a brief to the California Supreme Court while "Yes on 8" forces filed a brief extending their opposition to include invalidation of the same-sex marriages already performed in there. California's Supreme Court will consider the constitutionality of Proposition 8, which eliminated same sex marriage in the state earlier this November. The proposition, which passed 52 percent to 48, overturned a May ruling of the state Supreme Court that legalized same sex marriage.
After Prop. 8's passage, Brown had initially said that he would support the measure, which bans same-sex marriage, as enacted by the voters, according to the L.A. Times. Brown revised his position in a statement that "Proposition 8 must be invalidated because the amendment process cannot be used to extinguish fundamental constitutional rights without compelling justification."
Also Friday, Prop. 8 supporters filed a brief with the state Supreme Court seeking to invalidate the 18,000 same-sex marriages performed before the ban passed in November. This brief, co-written by Kenneth Starr, known as the independent counsel who investigated Bill Clinton, states: "Proposition 8's brevity is matched by its clarity. There are no conditional clauses, exceptions, exemptions or exclusions....For this court to rule otherwise would be to tear asunder a lavish body of jurisprudence. That body of decisional law commands judges – as servants of the people – to bow to the will of those whom they serve – even if the substantive result of what people have wrought in constitution-amending is deemed unenlightened," according to the Michigan Messenger. In his statement, Attorney General Brown indicated his belief that marriages entered into during the five months same-sex marriage was legal in California are valid irregardless of whether Proposition 8 is upheld.
Media Resources: Associated Press 12/20/08; Michigan Messenger 12/22/08; LA Times 12/19/08; CA Attorney General Statement 12/19/08; Feminist Daily Newswire 11/20/08
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1.
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .
10/30/2014 UPS Switches Pregnant Worker Policy Ahead of Supreme Court Case - The United Parcel Service (UPS) is changing its policy on light duty assignments for pregnant workers, even though the company will stand by its refusal to extend accommodations to a former employee in an upcoming Supreme Court case.
UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .
10/30/2014 North Dakota Medical Students Speak Out Against Measure 1 - Medical students at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences are asking North Dakotans to vote no on Measure 1, a personhood measure on the state ballot this fall.
The students issued published a letter in the Grand Forks Herald stating that they opposed Measure 1 in part because they are against "the government's taking control of the personal health care decisions of its citizens." Nearly 60 UND School of Medicine students signed the letter, citing concerns over the "very broad and ambiguous language" used in the proposed amendment, which has no regard for serious and life-threatening medical situations such as ectopic pregnancies.
Measure 1 would change the North Dakota state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" for humans "at any stage of development" - including the moment of fertilization and conception. . . .