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Tag: Nielson

Liveblogging Day 10: Part I

By Rick Jacobs

It’s just after 0830 and we’re back for week three, day ten. I now feel as is I belong up here on 19, in the Ceremonial Court Room, with Teddy from FDL and seven or so others. Frank Schubert just walked in. For the record, he’s a genial guy and he obviously knows how to win campaigns. Let us not mistake skill for belief. He’s no William Tam or Andy Pugno (see Brian’s excellent post).

The Prop. 8 side has given notice that they want to call Frank, but the plaintiffs have objected. We’ll see what happens.

The first order of business this morning will be procedural and then we’ll have the plaintiff’s document dump, which I have a feeling will be more than fascinating.

For those of you not in San Francisco, it’s wet and cold again. Remember that that the first day of the trial, with that beautiful vigil organized by Molly McKay and MEUSA, was a cold, crisp and eventually very bright day. While I’m not much into omens, that was the right way to begin this trial.

One last point. At some point today or tomorrow, I’ll write a bit about the folks behind AFER, but I want to mention again the key person. His name is Chad Griffin. I have known Chad since the Dean Campaign, in 2002. He’s young (well, he’s recovering slowly from that), uncannily smart and has a natural talent for communications. While Rob Reiner had the idea to hire Ted Olson and gets full credit for same, Chad made all of this happen. He’s sometimes a bit reluctant to get too out front and that’s probably smart given today’s environment, but we all owe him a huge debt of gratitude.

We’ll be back to you, the community that cares so deeply about equality, to help get some ideas about how to build our movement during the coming weeks, months and even years before this winds up, almost inevitably, at the Supreme Court. We cannot rely on judges alone. We have to show our friends, neighbors, coworkers and all of America that we progressives, we who are gay or lesbian or bisexual or transgender, we who are straight and care about our nation, all want equality.

We’re waiting for the judge. And then off we go!

[UPDATE] 8:59

Judge Walker: Good morning. I hope you had a good weekend. Mr. Boutrous, I understand you have some things to bring up?

B: We understand that the proponents want to call Mr. Schubert. We do not think the proponents have the right to call Frank Schubert while having obstructed our inquiry with 76 objections to producing documents. In terms of calling Mr. Schubert to authenticate documents, we have no particular objection, but if

Judge Walker: When did you learn that Mr. Schubert would be a witness? As I recall on Friday, the defense was going to call Mr. Blankenhorn and Mr. Miller. They did not mention Mr. Schubert. (more…)

94 Comments January 25, 2010

Liveblogging Day 9: Daily Summary

By Julia Rosen

I just got off the phone with Rick. He sounds like he is really looking forward to the weekend. I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t as well. I’m sure your refresh buttons are as well. Even though it was a short week, it was action packed.

Today’s proceedings were a bit tedious, at least in the afternoon, as Nielson repeatedly attempted to get Professor Herek to say that gay and lesbians can change their sexual orientation. Dr. Herek hung tough and Nielson is lucky he didn’t totally tick off Judge Walker with his repetitive questioning.

Rick will be back liveblogging on Monday morning and we will have fresh content throughout the weekend, including a few guest posts from some new voices. Personally, I am looking forward to a post from my friend and coworker Caitlin who just proposed to her fiance Jen last weekend. They will be talking about this case and the difficulty in deciding where to get married, and have it be legal.

If you have appreciated all of the writing on this site, please consider making a donation to support the Courage Campaign Institute. We rely on thousands of small donors to fight for LGBT equality and a more progressive California and can’t do it without your support.

Help spread the word and keep your friends up to date on the trial: Click here to share the Courage Campaign’s Prop 8 Trial Tracker on Facebook!

And without further ado, here is your daily summary. (more…)

41 Comments January 22, 2010

Liveblogging Day 9: Part VI Finishing up the day

By Rick Jacobs

We’re back.

Nielson (defense lawyer) (N): No consensus on what causes SO?

Dr. Gregory Herek (H): What I said in my expert testimony is there is no consensus of what causes people to have one or another SO.

N: The factors that cause a person to be homo or hetero not clear.

H: Yes.

N: Widely differing sources for adult sexual orientation, but no single theory enjoys broad support.

H: Yes.

H: My hypothesis, based on data currently available, is that we will find people went through multiple paths to sexual orientation. (more…)

195 Comments January 22, 2010

Liveblogging Day 9: Part V

By Rick Jacobs

[All from Steer court testimony]

Nielson (defense attorney conducting cross) (N): Are you aware that Ms. Steer was previously married to a man?

Dr. Gregory Herek (H): Yes.

N: “When I married Matthew, I loved him.” Does that surprise you?

H: I had no expectations about it, so it does not surprise me.

N: “When I met Matthew, I was attracted to him.”

H: Same reply.

N: “When I married Matthew in 1987 I wanted to have a meaningful marriage…”

H: Same reply.

N: Have you always had a sexual attraction to women? Does that surprise you?

H: That’s what I’ve been saying all morning. People are raised to think they are supposed to be hetero. You
are defining Ms. Steer’s time period of sexuality for entire life. We refer to durable as for a period of time, not entire life. (more…)

106 Comments January 22, 2010

Liveblogging Day 9: Part IV

By Rick Jacobs

Judge: Says to Boutrous (B), “So if the defendants finish their cross 90 minutes before 4:00PM, you’ll finish your case today?”

B: Yes.

Nielson (N): That’s a target, but unrealistic.

Judge: We have something to shoot for and can be optimistic.

N: Another article.

K: Given measurement problems, one could seriously doubt that sexual orientation is a serious concept at all. Do you think that is unreasonable?

Dr. Gregory Herek (H): Well, I think they are raising that (hard to hear due to static) as philosophical way of discussing various positions. (more…)

192 Comments January 22, 2010

Liveblogging Day 9: Part III

By Rick Jacobs

We’re back.

[Back and forth about admitting entire book. Nielson wants to. Our side does not, saying that they had a chance to cross-examine Badgett when she was here. There’s a lack of foundation. Judge Walker asks Nielson why he wants to admit entire book? Finally, the judge says that he’ll admit the excerpts.]

Judge: What does “operational” mean for lay people?

Dr. Gregory Herek (H): One might have a textbook sense of “socio-economic status,” but you cannot ask in a survey “what is your socio-economic status?” because people won’t understand that. So you ask “what was your income last year?” for example and that becomes the operational definition.

Judge: So it’s a proxy for the theoretical definition?

H: Yes. We are almost always going to miss something in the operational definition.

Nielson (defense lawyer conducting the cross): Asks about article by Prof. Meyer and if you are familiar with him.

H: Yes, I am familiar with him.

N: Reads from Meyer’s article in which Meyer says only 15% of women and 24% of men fit all three categories that H has used.

H: Core group that self-identifies as gay or l or bi. But there was a group that has same sex desire as self-expressed. That is largest group that is not hetero. Then there were others who said they had engaged in same sex behavior. (more…)

203 Comments January 22, 2010

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