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Imperial County Desperately Wants to Appeal

Trial analysis

by Brian Devine

Imperial County just filed a Notice of Appeal of Judge Walker’s ruling striking down Prop 8. Here’s a copy of its Notice of Appeal.

Imperial County decided to wait until the eve of trial before it filed a request to intervene in the case.  Judge Walker denied the County’s request to intervene, finding that the request was not timely and that the County does not have standing.  Here’s a detailed discussion of the concept of “standing.” Judge Walker held:

Imperial County does not have a significant protectible interest in the outcome of plaintiffs’ constitutional challenge to Proposition 8. Moreover, even if Imperial County did have an interest in the subject matter of this litigation, state law provides adequate procedures for Imperial County to protect that interest, and, in addition, the current state defendants adequately represent Imperial County’s interest as a matter of law. Accordingly, Imperial County is not entitled to intervene. . .

* * *

Imperial County’s status as a local government  does not provide it with an interest in the constitutionality of Proposition 8 or standing to defend Proposition 8 on appeal. Accordingly, Imperial County’s motion to intervene as a defendant in this action . . . is DENIED.

It’s not all that surprising that Imperial County filed a Notice of Appeal.  It is asking the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal to decide for itself whether or not the County has standing to appeal.  As I discussed earlier, there’s a decent chance that Judge Walker and the Ninth Circuit will find that the official proponents of Prop 8 do not have standing to appeal Judge Walker’s decision.  While the arguments are different, I also think it’s unlikely that Imperial County has standing.  But from the anti-equality perspective, it gives them one more argument to make before the Ninth Circuit, so it’s important to them.

This is a minor development.  Stay tuned for the more significant ruling on the pending motion to stay, which hopefully will come out today. . .


  • 1. Ronnie  |  August 10, 2010 at 8:55 am

    Me 1st…geeze you guys were busy while I was out at Apple getting my desktop cleaned….me email was filled…..<3…Ronnie

  • 2. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:02 am

    'scribin' from my dentist's office. He has wifi. Nice!

  • 3. Ķĭŗîļĺę&  |  August 10, 2010 at 8:55 am

    My poor inbox, I already have like 6000 comments there 😀

  • 4. Ann S.  |  August 10, 2010 at 8:55 am

    Must – read – more – and – more

  • 5. Alan E.  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:13 am

  • 6. Chris  |  August 10, 2010 at 8:55 am

    Who the hell are they?

  • 7. Anonygrl  |  August 10, 2010 at 8:59 am

    Advocates for Faith and Freedom it says…. they bear looking up. Be right back!

  • 8. Anonygrl  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:00 am

    Advocates for Faith and Freedom

    On their In the Courts page, they list Perry V. Schwarzenegger at the top. Interesting.

  • 9. fiona64  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:02 am

    From the "About Us" page:

    Advocates for Faith and Freedom is a non-profit law firm dedicated to protecting religious liberty in the courts.

    Our mission is to engage in cases that will uphold our religious liberty and America’s heritage and to educate Americans about our fundamental constitutional rights. We recognize that America was founded on Judeo-Christian principles.


    I quit reading at that point, because they are completely incorrect. Once they make an error in fact of that magnitude, there's simply no need to know more.


  • 10. Mouse  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:30 am

    Besides, with the declaring of Prop 8 to be unconstitutional, religious liberty has been protected and preserved.

    For ALL religions, not just some narrow-minded definition of the one-and-only right religion.

  • 11. Straight Ally #3008  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:34 am

    It's a damn shame that the phrase "protecting religious liberty" sets off warning klaxons in my brain.

  • 12. Breaking the Silence  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:37 am

    Bingo! =)

  • 13. Breaking the Silence  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:38 am

    (Bingo! @ Fiona)

  • 14. eDee  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:43 am

    I’ve often wondered if “Gay” was a religion how organizations like NOM would try to deny people equal rights.

    I once heard a law student debate the rights of gays if it were considered a disability – he was careful to point out a disability not a mental illness. Under the law of “equal and the same” gays would have to be allowed to marry. Lol

    ANYWAY “We recognize that America was founded on Judeo-Christian principles.” GAG!!! That’s what you learn in Christian brainwashing school and home study. I’m sure that’s what the Duggers teach their kids.

  • 15. Josh  |  August 10, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    What about the religious liberty of churches that want to include gay couples in marriage?

    They don't want to protect or uphold their liberty.

    The obviously don't understand fundamental constitutional rights of minorities.

  • 16. mfbjr  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:01 am

    Imperial County is being represented by "Advocates for Faith and Freedom." WTF?

  • 17. Chris  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:04 am


    I want to see more advocates for freedom from faith.

  • 18. jt  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:15 am

    A group you may want to look into:

    Americans United for Separation of Church and State

  • 19. bJason  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:37 am

    very nice!

  • 20. Dave P.  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:06 am

    Ever been to Imperial County? It's not the kind of place most peopel picture when they think of California.

    My favorite description for places like Imperial County is "nothing by gun racks, meth labs and Yes On 8 signs".

  • 21. l8r_g8r  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:17 am

    They also have the best carne asada money can buy.

  • 22. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:37 am

    I don't know about that. There's a great place in Highland Park (northeast of downtown L.A.) that's awfully damned good.

  • 23. Richard A. Walter (s  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:46 am

    And we have a local chain here in Cumberland County called MiCasita's that is family-owned, and the whole family is Mexican. When you all come to visit, we will take you there. MiCasita's is the ONLY place to go for authentic Mexican cuisine in our area, and the prices are so low, especially considering how generous the servings are!

  • 24. l8r_g8r  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:25 am

    Talk about nom nom nom…

  • 25. Elliott  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:33 am

    I hate you Dave! I just finished eggplant parm and thought I was satisfied… Now I'm really seriously considering getting into the car and finding carne asada. So much for my "summer of thin" and all my thinly-veiled rationalizations.

    Carne asada…. Mmmmmmm.

  • 26. Elliott  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:37 am

    Oops… In my hunger-induced rant I fired my cannon at the wrong guy…. Never would have happened if therre was a meth lab in Hancock Park. Screw it… I'm off for some street deliciousness.

  • 27. Richard A. Walter (s  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:49 am

    @l8r_g8r: Now you have gotten my stomach rumbling, asking me if my throat has been cut! Too bad we can't afford to order any just yet.

  • 28. Jeff  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:07 am

    Yeah thats beyond weird if not unlawful because of separation of Church and State?!?!

  • 29. mfbjr  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:04 am

    Ok – so they are clearely a religion-based organization. How is it possible that they represented a county government in this? Yikes.

  • 30. fiona64  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:06 am

    Ooh, good point. This is clearly a violation of the Establishment Clause.


  • 31. bJason  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:38 am

    Love you, Fi!

  • 32. Sheryl Carver  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:05 am

    Here's another take on the situation as we all wait for Judge Walker, & try to understand the situation & all the seemingly infinite possible paths this could take.

    To avoid moderation Purgatory, see "What's next: Can the Prop 8 decision be appealed?" at 365gayDOTcom

  • 33. Jonathan  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:07 am

    Shocker. The associate listed on the caption as counsel for the proposed intervenors attended Pepperdine.

  • 34. Richard A. Walter (s  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:07 am

    They are trying to do anything they can to strip us once again of our fundamental rights to marriage. Or could it be that Imperial County is actually on our side and someone there wants to see this go farther so that Judge Walker's ruling goes to SCOTUS and becomes the law of the land throughout the whole US?

  • 35. Dave P.  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:09 am

    No. I've been to Imperial County.

    Trust me. It's not possible.

  • 36. Jeff  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:12 am

    Ill second that – do a search on the county and Prop 8… the vast majority of the county are ant-equal rights.

  • 37. Ann S.  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:14 am

    @Jeff, they even said so in their motion to intervene — that their voters were 70% for Prop 8 and 30% against.

    As if that should make any difference in whether they get to intervene.

  • 38. Dave P.  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:16 am

    …. and as if that should be anything that a county should want to publicly admit about what kind of people live there….

  • 39. Richard A. Walter (s  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:42 am

    Damn! I was hoping that maybe somebody was trying to sneak one in to help us. Not that we really need any help.
    BTW, for our any of our family here who happen to work in a copy/print shop: About how long would it take to print out the entire set of filings and transcripts for this case, as it stands right now? In other words, if I downloaded all the filings to a CD and took it to the Copy & Print Center at Staples, how loong after I ordered it would I have to wait before going back to pick it up? Same Day?

  • 40. eDee  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:54 am

    @Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)

    Richard darling,
    Would you be so kind as to give me a link to where I may download the transcripts?
    It will absolutely kill me to have to read them, I have no attention span.
    OH I wish they had been broadcast on

  • 41. Alan E.  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:02 am

    AFER has them on their site, but you can watch the entire thing reenacted at

    @Richard, you are looking at 3000 pages plus binding. You will have to pay a lot to get it same day or overnight.

  • 42. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:15 am

    AFER's site seems to still be down.

    3,000 only cover the transcript from the testimony phase of the case. There are many other hearings and closing arguments as well. And if you're intending to include all the filings, orders, evidence, etc. I have no idea how many pages you're talking about.

  • 43. Mark  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:20 am

    Here is the link for the Los Angeles Times article:

  • 44. Sheryl Carver  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:23 am

    Have been trying to check AFER's site, to see if they had anything new on the stay, appeal, or standing issue. Have been getting a "site temporarily unavailable" message. Hope they haven't been hacked, or anything bad like that.

  • 45. Tony Douglass in Ca  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:31 am

    I just Tweeted them, I'll let you know if I get anything.

  • 46. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:40 am

    Just so you know, Sheryl. I'm back on duty and nothing's come through on the email list yet about the stay.

  • 47. Keith  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:23 am

    They don't have standing and where is the judge's stay ruling? Grrrr. He needs to remove the stay and gays should be allowed to marry beginning tomorrow. The Ninth court of appeals will not overturn Judge Walker, and neither will the SCOTUS.

  • 48. Sagesse  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:25 am

    Waiting patiently and subscribing.

  • 49. Jim  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:27 am

    Maybe the real headline should be:

    Religious Right Law Firm Desperately Wants to Appeal

  • 50. Jeff  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:34 am

    The twitter post on this article is wrong?! I dont see where he has denied it….

    Judge Walker denies Imperial County's effort to intervene in apeal of #prop8 case. #lgbt

  • 51. fiona64  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:43 am

    He denied it the same day he issued the Prop 8 ruling, on the grounds that the filing was not timely (in other words, they missed the deadline to be included as a D-I).


  • 52. Jeff  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:48 am

    But he cant deny their appeal to the 9th district right? (I was under the assumption thats what this article is about with the background history of them attempting to get in on it before… "intervene in apeal" would be the 9th district no?)

  • 53. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:48 am

    There was more to Walker denying the intervention than just untimely request. Anne is the fountain of knowledge in this area.

    Imperial County has now filed a notice that they intend to appeal both the determination that they can't intervene and also Walker's decision in the case. Of course, they can't appeal the decision unless they win they're granted intervenor status.

  • 54. Jeff  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:15 am

    Thanks Kathleen – this gets so confusing for me and Im sure many others that are learning a lot of this as we go along! Thanks Anne too!

  • 55. Ann S.  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:15 am

    Kathleen, you're being too kind, but I did read the motion by Imperial County to intervene and the denial of the motion by Judge Walker. What I posted earlier was more or less this:

    They missed the deadline for motions to intervene. Walker ended up ruling that this didn't actually matter, he denied the motion on other grounds.

    They didn’t want to participate in the trial, just the appeal. This is why it didn't matter that they filed late.

    One of their arguments seems to be that the voters of their county voted for Prop 8 70% to 30%. (Sorry, your county does not get its own speshul marriage laws.)

    Another is that failure to appeal would result in “legal uncertainty and confusion”. (Uh, no. It would result in a final decision.)

    And in Walker’s ruling, he says that Imperial County is a mere subdivision of the state, has to do what the state decides as far as marriage, has no "significant protectible interest" (meaning they're not harmed either way), and if they suffer from uncertainty and confusion about their duties under state law, they can seek declaratory relief.

    Or as another friend of mine summed it up: “your job in registering marriage licenses doesn’t require independent thought; if it’s too tough for you, perhaps you’re in the wrong job.”

    Here's the thing: the duty of a county like Imperial County, which is a mere subdivision of the state (there are different creatures called "charter" counties, which I don't fully understand) is just to administer the laws the way the state tells them to. In legal terms, theirs are mere "ministerial" duties. They do not get to make separate decisions about who marries. Their interest is legally no different from the state's, and the state gets to speak for them. They don't get to speak separately.

    Hope that helps.

  • 56. Straight Ally #3008  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:35 am


    LOL NO!

  • 57. Josh  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:38 am


    I hope so!!

  • 58. BradK  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:42 am

    Way to go Imperial(ist) County!

    From your unique vantage point lying at the sphincter of the Salton Sea, and as a backwater shithole with less than one half of one percent of the population of California, you nonetheless feel empowered to defend "…the opinion of over 7 million voters" — something the Governor and the Attorney General declined to do.

    Or do you simply enjoy being a tool of the Evangelical fringe?

    Either way, each day I'm more ashamed to be living in California.

  • 59. Alex O'Cady  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:03 am

    Funny. Their population (2008 est.) is little over 150K. That would make their "yes" voters number around 115K….interesting, that one seasoned federal judge isn't "qualified" to overturn the will of 7 million voters, but 115K backwater inbreds are "qualified" to appeal it.

  • 60. Alex O'Cady  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:34 am

    Apologies, that was out of line. I meant to just look up the numbers, but I've had a long day dealing with my own little corner of conservative wingnut-ville (Los Osos/San Luis Obispo County, which I will grant you is not anywhere near as bad as IC, though I believe we did still pass Prop 8 with a majority), and having to work with some of them gets to me sometimes(actually, all five of my co-workers in the pharmacy are so Catholic they've all signed their little refusal to dispense the morning-after pill).

    I apologize again for any offense.

  • 61. BradK  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:33 am

    You didn't offend me, Alex!

  • 62. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:51 am

    My sympathies to any reasonable person who lives there. It must be a lonely place. 🙁

  • 63. Breaking the Silence  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:49 am

    Maybe they've got an ulterior motive, like positioning themselves as a great retirement community for burned-out NOMbies and AFA types?

  • 64. Jeff  |  August 10, 2010 at 9:57 am

    That is the exact word I would use to describe this appeal: desperate. Especially after Judge Walker's plain and strongly worded smackdown denying their intervention in the trial.

  • 65. Anna Bryan  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:13 am

    I desperately wish to protest their next County Commissioners meeting and disrupt their lives in a similar manner as they are wishing to disrupt other citizen's lives.

    Maybe they will just hold another closed session…

  • 66. l8r_g8r  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:14 am

    Okay, why are we insulting the people of Imperial County here? This is an action of the County Board of Supervisors. The Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 to intervene.

    Don't insult the people, or the Imperial Valley, please.

  • 67. Dave P.  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:17 am

    Yeah, good point. And you're right about the carne asada too.

    Now I'm hungry.

  • 68. Marlene  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:39 am

    I have a *great* recipe for Santa Fe Enchilada Bake if anyone wants it…

    [email protected]

  • 69. Anna Bryan  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:38 am

    Oh, I think Imperial Valley's Board of Supervisors specifically noted in their petition that around 80% of their residents supported proposition 8. Additionally, the residents voted these clowns into office.

    … and my twitter account is back up! YAY! be sure to show twitter some love (and FYI: don't follow hundreds of Rick Warren's "purpose driven" followers)

  • 70. l8r_g8r  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:49 am

    69.7% voted in favor of Proposition 8. 30.3% voted against Proposition 8, including my father-in-law and my sister-in-law.

    It is unfair to lump everyone in together.

    Direct the anger where it belongs — at the BoS.

  • 71. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:00 am

    Great news on the twitter account, Anna!

  • 72. Bolt  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:29 am

    Attention Imperial County: Get your marriage certificates out, because marriage equality is the law of the land, and you're powerless to defend this federal challenge.

    HahaHehe! Go to hell, bigots!

  • 73. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:56 am

    Tell them what you really think, Bolt. 🙂

  • 74. Bolt  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:35 am

    I feel like my posts are on the cusp of evaporation.

  • 75. Anonygrl  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:48 am

    Don't ever think that, Bolt!

    I know what you mean, sometimes… I write something that I think is brilliant, and it gets no response.

    Then I realize, I read everything everybody says here, and can't respond to all of them, I would never sleep or eat. But I read them. I take them in, and I realize others do the same. So even if I don't get a response, I know you folks are all reading me. Even my crappy posts, which I do admit to at times. 🙂

    So know that we are reading you, Bolt… and we appreciate you, even if we sometimes forget to say it. 🙂

  • 76. Anonygrl  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:36 am

    OK… I have a new VERY short scene for tonight… hope you enjoy the new twist.

    "OneMan OneWoman OneBusdriver"


    Maggie is on the bus, but the boys are not, they are trying to stir up excitement in a church in Florida. Maggie pokes around, looking for something to do. Finally she sits at the computer. She turns it on, and we immediately hear the "Bawm chicka bow wow!" music and the three male voices moaning, as Louis forgot to log off when he shut down. She stares at the computer, her mouth hanging open. After a minute, the music stops, the clip has ended. Maggie glances around, furtively, then clicks the mouse, and the music starts up again. She leans in to watch, her eyes wide.

    Fade to black

  • 77. DazedWheels  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:38 am

    Awesome post! They're coming to WV tomorrow, and I'm just gonna point at them and laugh!!

  • 78. Richard A. Walter (s  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:22 am

    Dazed, please, give them the same reception that greeted the Phelps Klan.

  • 79. Anna Bryan  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:41 am

    What? I guess that explains the "b. buddies" charge that keep showing up on the credit card…

  • 80. Anonygrl  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:44 am

    Charges? Credit card? I am sure that I (and Brian, and Lewis, though possibly not Maggie) have NO idea what you are talking about. 🙂

  • 81. Alan E.  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:56 am

    Pfff only the free stuff for BB.

  • 82. Dave P.  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:56 am

    Ah, the plot thickens!! Excellent!! : )

  • 83. Richard A. Walter (s  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:42 am

    Oh, that is RICH!!! I can't wait to see tomorrow's episode!

  • 84. rf  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:54 am

    She leans in to watch, her eyes wide.

    So that's where by G-damn husband has been.


  • 85. Richard A. Walter (s  |  August 10, 2010 at 12:04 pm

    LOVE IT!

  • 86. Joel  |  August 10, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    Yes, we need Kathy Bates! And I thought, although he's a bit old now, maybe Ned Beatty for Brian Brown?

  • 87. Dpeck  |  August 10, 2010 at 3:39 pm

    Even better –

    Philip Seymour Hofman.

    or –

    Jack Black.

  • 88. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 3:57 pm

    Philip Seymour Hoffman was who first came to mind for Brian.

  • 89. Dpeck  |  August 10, 2010 at 4:36 pm

    Both of them! Philip Seymour Hoffman as Brian and Jack Black can play Louis!!

  • 90. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 4:40 pm

    Oh, yes. I like this casting. Although Jack Black has a kind of vitality about him that I don't think does justice to how dull Louis is.

  • 91. Joel  |  August 10, 2010 at 4:46 pm

    How about that actor that plats the mail guy in "Just Shoot Me" for Louis?

  • 92. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 4:50 pm

    Isn't that the actor who's now in the Sarah Silverman show? If so, too old. I don't know how old Louis is, but I think he's younger than Brian.

  • 93. Richard A. Walter (s  |  August 11, 2010 at 4:07 am

    Brian really doesn't look as young in person as he does on the videos. And when is he ever going to wash his hair? Does he not realize that using a whole tube of Brylcreem at one time went out in the 50"s?

  • 94. Richard A. Walter (s  |  August 11, 2010 at 4:58 am

    After seeing BBB and LJM yesterday, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Jack Black are too young. Need somebody about Mickey Rooney's age.

  • 95. Anonygrl  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:43 am

    In other "news that is getting better bit by bit"…

    All 31 states of Mexico now RECOGNIZE same sex marriages. They don't all perform them, but they recognize them.

    It's better than nothing!

  • 96. Dave P.  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:59 am

    That is GREAT news, if you ask me! The way I look at it, this means Mexico can officially be added to the list of countries that perform and recognize same sex marriages.

  • 97. allen  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:39 am

    I agree. It will help to remind others that both Canada and Mexico, our neighboring nations, both allow marriage equality.

  • 98. Straight Dave  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:30 am

    More significant, in my view…

    "Mexico’s Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that all 31 states must recognize same-sex marriages performed in the capital [Mexico City]".

    It's their anti-DOMA rule. The US is getting thoroughly embarrassed by our Catholic/Hispanic neighbors. This shows how far behind we are. But it might also show how close we are.

    The rest of the world has moved on while we were asleep drugged for 8 years. Perry and its after-effects might just snap us out of it. If Walker's stay vanishes for good in the next week, we are off and running. The NOM Tour implosion may also embolden the Tribe. Their support just ain't there anymore.

  • 99. Straight Dave  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:33 am

    Sorry, Anonygrl. You already had this out there first. I think it's quite a bit better than "better than nothing", symbolically at least.

  • 100. Keith  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:57 am

    What's sickening is this should be a non issue in America. The religious extremists are pouring millions of dollars into discriminating against others instead of helping others. What a sad and pathetic use of resources.

  • 101. Josh  |  August 10, 2010 at 12:37 pm

    Exactly, Keith. First, they should help feed, clothe, and give shelter to the needy. Then they should work to ban divorce. If they can solve those issues, then they could attempt to prevent gays from marrying.

    Of course, serving the needy and trying to ban divorce won't raise as much money as bashing gays. They need lots of money to continue trying to get anti-gay politicians elected.

    This whole anti-gay campaign has always been about raising money to get their politicians elected so they can make laws they like. "Good" judeo-christian laws.

  • 102. Straight Ally #3008  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:40 am

    This seems like such a silly technicality – if I'm reading it correctly, same-sex couples have to travel to the Distrito Federal to get married, then their union is legal in the rest of the country. Then again, it's like New York state – recognize SSM, but don't perform it.

  • 103. Anonygrl  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:44 am

    Yes, SA… that is exactly what it is like. But as SD says, it is quite a bit better than nothing. Especially in such a heavily Roman Catholic country.

  • 104. Straight Ally #3008  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:52 am

    Agreed, Anonygrl. It's effectively national marriage equality, I'm just a bit on the OCD side and I wish they would drop the technicality. But hey, it'd be fantastic if DC marriages here were valid everywhere! Imagine the boon for the DC economy and air travel….

    To digress a bit, counting Mexico as the quasi-eleventh country to grant marriage equality, I predict these nations will be the next to beat the USA to the punch:


  • 105. Straight Dave  |  August 10, 2010 at 12:21 pm


    It's a long list, and the US is at least 2 years away even if things go well.

  • 106. the lone ranger  |  August 10, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    even Nepal

  • 107. Sarah  |  August 10, 2010 at 10:47 am


  • 108. Josiah  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:47 am

    Poor Imperial County… they just don't have the appeal that the big cities do.

  • 109. Straight Ally #3008  |  August 10, 2010 at 11:54 am

  • 110. Trish  |  August 10, 2010 at 12:03 pm

    *sigh* heading home after no word on the stay.

  • 111. HunterR.  |  August 10, 2010 at 12:30 pm

    Many years ago I moved to the States and apply for political asylum on the basis of sexual orientation. I couldn't see myself going back. I'm an US citizen now, and never expected to live this prop 8 experience. I'm having and identity crisis right this very moment!

    wow, wow, wow unbelievable!

    An interesting article on the DAILY DISH, an excerpt below

    "If you have total gay freedom and no gay institutions that can channel love and desire into commitment and support, you end up in San Francisco in the 1970s. That way of life – however benignly expressed, however defensible as the pent-up unleashed liberation of a finally free people – helped kill 300,000 young human beings in this country in our lifetime. Ross may think that toll is unimportant, or that it was their fault, but I would argue that a Catholic's indifference to this level of death and suffering and utter refusal to do anything constructive to prevent it happening again, indeed a resort to cruel stigmatization of gay people that helps lead to self-destructive tendencies, is morally evil."

  • 112. HunterR.  |  August 10, 2010 at 12:31 pm

    (did move to the States from Mexico City)

  • 113. Brad  |  August 10, 2010 at 12:34 pm

    I wonder if someone could clarify something:<br.Did the City of County of San Francisco have some official standing in the federal case?If so, then why could SF be involved while Imperial County, another unit of the state of California, is disallowed from being involved?

  • 114. Ann S.  |  August 10, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    @Brad, I'm not sure I can explain fully, but the City and County of San Francisco participated in the trial as a plaintiff-intervenor, that is, they were allowed to join on the plaintiffs' side. They argued that they had lost significant revenues due to the loss of marriage license fees (and they also argued, I believe, that the businesses of the city lost revenues from the wedding business).

    Somewhere on this post I believe I mentioned that Imperial County is a mere subdivision of the State but that there are also charter cities and counties, which have a somewhat different status. I do know that the City and County of SF is a charter city (and county), but whether that is relevant here, I do not know.

  • 115. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    The City and County of San Francisco were Plaintiff-Intervenors. I seem to recall that Walker approved them as P-Is for a limited purpose – to show the harm caused to the City and County by Prop 8. I've never looked at the filings or Walker's ruling, so I don't know on what basis he approved it.

  • 116. Brad  |  August 10, 2010 at 1:36 pm

    Thank you, Ann and Kathleen. That makes sense.

  • 117. Dave  |  August 10, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    What is shocking is Imperial County is NOT a right wing area. It is a very liberal county and a democrat strong hold. It is one of the most left leaning counties in the state. The thing is Imperial is extremly Catholic. Like 80+% of the county is Roman Catholic.

  • 118. Joel  |  August 10, 2010 at 1:59 pm

    I have a random question for the legal eagles here:

    When a foreign national of a country that recognizes multiple marriages comes with his wives to reside, assuming that he does NOT have diplomatic standing, how does the United States respond to his having more than one wife? Must he delegate one wife as his only wife and discard the other three (I understand that Muslims are allowed four wives)? Can all of his wives accompany him, or does he pick his "favorite?"

    And what about same-sex married couples from countries that recognize them? What happens if they move to the States? What if the country they are from has a treaty with the United States in which each country has agreed to recognize the marriages of the other?

    Okay, that was more than one question.

  • 119. Felyx  |  August 10, 2010 at 4:11 pm

    Wow Joel,

    I am sure the answer is some version of no… but I too am very curious! – Felyx

  • 120. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    I don't know the answer to these questions. But I would think that we should be able to get an answer to the second one from people here. There must be some ss couple here who got married in another country – Canada, for example – and now lives here.

  • 121. Richard A. Walter (s  |  August 11, 2010 at 5:00 am

    I know a couple who are legally married in Canada but live in West Virginia. Once they crossed the border, the only place their marriage license and marriage certificate are recognized are those states here which recognize ssm.

  • 122. Franck  |  August 10, 2010 at 6:05 pm

    Joel, Kathleen, as far as I know, the answer to the second part is this: no recognition of foreign same-sex marriages, even if both spouses are American citizens.

    If you're lucky, your state of residence will recognize your marriage or at least consider it as equivalent to a civil union. But for the purposes of the federal state, a same-sex marriage is pretty much null and invalid — you could be as well two single persons.

    – Franck P. Rabeson
    Days spent apart from my fiancé because of DOMA: 1146 days, as of today.

  • 123. Kathleen  |  August 10, 2010 at 6:15 pm

    That's about what I'd expect. The feds won't recognize the marriage and individual states will if they recognize ss marriages, in general.

    I'm guessing the answer to the question of multiple wives is that only the first marriage would be considered valid in the U.S., as all states forbid having multiple spouses at the same time. But I'm only guessing.

  • 124. Ann S.  |  August 11, 2010 at 1:09 am

    Joel, I do not know nearly enough about immigration to give you educated answers, but I would agree with what others have said. DOMA prevents recognition of any same-sex marriage by the US government, wherever performed.

  • 125. Shawn  |  August 11, 2010 at 12:53 am

    The County of Imperial located 120 east of San Diego just days ago was designated as the worst place in America to live. Unemployment is at 36% substandard housing, politicians that worry more about how much they make and dont give a damn about the people they represent. I can say that the group probably paid the Board of Supervisors for the right to file this appeal on their behalf.

    60% of the population is migrant farm workers. The valle consists of El Centro,Calexico, Holtville, Brawley, Imperial Seeley and Calexico or whats left of it after the Easter Earthquake destroyed the city due to un-enforced building standards which of course fall on the County and that board of supervisors.

    By the way, I was raised in the Valley it was a nice place to grow up and still has its potential, however the greedy have opressed the illegal workers into slavery and only the well to do survive. Of course thats why the want to infringe on the Civil Rights of others. Interestingly enough the appeal was filed by Attorneys from Murietta whihc of course is where all of this comes from. Why did the County not hire its own County Counsel to file this simple 2 page appeal, I am sure that a paralegal in the County Attorney's office could have typed it and signed it on behalf of the County.

  • 126. Kathleen  |  August 11, 2010 at 3:20 am

    Thank you for the interesting perspective, Shawn.

    As to the court filing, this is just a notice of appeal. The appeal itself, if it goes forward, will be supported by a legal brief which expands on legal arguments. I've, too, have been wondering why this religiously motivated legal organization is representing the county, and I suspect that the Supervisors wouldn't have been able to get the votes to go forward with an appeal if it had meant the county picking up the legal tab. I'll see if I can find minutes of the Board of Supes meeting where they voted for this.

  • 127. BradK  |  August 11, 2010 at 3:28 am

    I would love to read those minutes!

  • 128. Kathleen  |  August 11, 2010 at 5:06 am

    This was handled in closed session and voted on at the August 10 meeting. Minutes for that meeting aren't posted at their website yet. Looking at past minutes, it seems this county has a habit of bare bones minutes, so don't know how much info will be available when they're released. However, they must have said something at the meeting because the local press reported who voted for and against the decision to appeal.

    This article says this news outlet intends to report with more information today:

    The reporter may be a source of info on the question of the legal representation. An IC resident here might also want to call the BofSupes office and see what information is available.

    If I were a local advocate, I'd be questioning how this issue is being taken up entirely in closed session. While the Brown Act (California's 'sunshine law') permits matters of litigation to be handled in closed sessions, there are some limitations on that. It is mostly meant to allow the county to confer in private with counsel, in the way any client has a right with its attorney. But I think it could be argued that, at minimum, the county should be required to explain IN A PUBLIC meeting what rationale they're using to justify their intervention and where the money is coming from to mount this appeal.

  • 129. Kathleen  |  August 11, 2010 at 7:00 am

    More information from

    From the article "Advocates for Faith and Freedom is filing a motion to intervene at no charge to the county…"

    There were public comments on the issue at the board meeting. Predictably, the only commenter in favor of the appeal was an associate pastor from an El Centro church who used arguments based on his interpretation of the Bible, about how God intended for men and women to procreate. Yawn.

  • 130. BradK  |  August 11, 2010 at 7:17 am

    Thanks as always Kathleen!

    Even if God is picking up the tab for the legal fees incurred (from His vast cache of tax-exempt wealth) , there is still the issue of the BoS time, use of public facilities and other resources, etc. to collude with religious entities from outside the county. Where is the benefit to the beleaguered population of IC in all this?

    I find this highly suspect. Perhaps when they're done investigation the city of Bell (poorest city in LA County) they can take a look under the covers of the IC BoS and who their bedfellows are.

  • 131. Kathleen  |  August 11, 2010 at 7:25 am

    I agree with the waste of resources. I mean, doesn't IC have more pressing issues, with so many of its residents out of work?

  • 132. Ann S.  |  August 11, 2010 at 7:27 am

    Yeah, but if it's true that the Advocates for Faith and Freedom (gag) are picking up the tab for this (and this would bear looking into) then they're merely wasting their time.

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