Prop 8: Both sides prepare for next round
FRESNO, California (KFSN) -- Legal experts believe judge Vaughn Walker's recent ruling was written so that it would ultimately make its way to the U.S. Supreme Court. But before the gay marriage debate reaches the nation's high court, it still has many legal hurdles to clear. Prop 8 supporters filed their motion for an appeal one day before the Friday's deadline. The appeals process could take months if not up to a year. But supporters and opponents of gay marriage say the lengthy legal battle is starting to take a toll on them emotionally.
Federal Judge Vaughn Walker's ruling on prop 8 was a victory for gay marriage activists like Scotti Maldonado. But the legal battles over the years on this hot button issue have left Maldonado feeling like he's been on an emotional rollercoaster.
"I've been with my partner for almost four years now and really want to share in something that's so important to so many people. And that is a little frustrating we can't go out and get married right away." said Maldonado.
Maldonado can't get married because the judge issued a temporary hold on same-sex marriage licenses. That's good news to Pastor Scott Hansen of the Bridge church in east Central Fresno. The gay marriage opponent also admits the debate over prop eight is taking its toll on him.
"We'll there's a certain fatigue in this process because we've been through this with the statewide votes. Both of which came out the same way and yet there's this constant fighting." said Dr. Hansen.
The fighting between the two sides is expected to continue well into the future. It could take up to a year before the 9TH Circuit Court of Appeals hears this case and there's no timetable as to when it has to address the appeal. ABC 30 legal analyst Tony Capozzi says the 136 page ruling by Judge Walker was carefully crafted with the intent of it going to a higher court.
"Very well written. Very well organized and rationalized as to how he's coming to his opinion." Capozzi said.
He adds it's similar to Judge Oliver Wanger's water ruling when he decided that farmers mattered as much as fish.
"In his opinion, he specifically set out how the case would go out through the courts and set out the specific issues as judge Vaughn Walker did in this case.
Both judges seeing that is a landmark case and the case will do through the process and be scrutinized very carefully." Capozzi added.
Capozzi says Judge Walker issued a hold on same-sex marriage licenses because if the court of appeals overturned his decision, there would have been more confusion over which marriages were indeed legal.
gay rights, politics, tommy tran
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