Courtwatch 2012

2012 September 24

“Distribution Day” for the following cases before the Supreme Court:

  • Hollingsworth v. Perry– Whether the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment prohibits the State of California from defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman. (This is the Prop 8 case.)
  • Windsor v. U.S. – Whether Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, 1 U.S.C. § 7, which defines the term “marriage” for all purposes under federal law as “only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife,” deprives same-sex couples who are lawfully married under the laws of their states (such as New York) of the equal protection of the laws, as guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States.

I don’t know yet whether these cases will be heard this term:

What Does This Mean?

According to Scottie Thomaston, at the Prop 8 Trial Tracker website, it means that the members of the Supreme Court are deciding TODAY whether they will hear  the Prop 8 case and the DOMA/New York case this term. We may find out their decision tomorrow, or maybe not until October 5, according to a commenter on the Prop 8 site.

If DOMA (the Defense of Marriage Act) is overturned, we could start to see our human rights recognized as early as the summer of 2013. (The Supreme Court ordinarily announces its decisions during the summer following the fall in which the cases were heard.)

Keeping our unequal fingers crossed!

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  1. 2012 November 2
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    UPDATE: Supes will consider whether to hear Prop 8 case and other DOMA cases in Nov. 20 meeting, scheduled to announce their decision on Nov. 26.

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