USA: Why Did Scalia Join Roberts to Let Prop 8 Decision Stand?

Written by scott on July 15th, 2013

Prop 8 OverInteresting – we haven’t seen this aspect of the recent Supreme Court decisions covered before. Salon reports:

Antonin Scalia cast the deciding vote to bring same-sex marriage to California. And nobody noticed. In Hollingsworth v. Perry, the Supreme Court held that the proponents of Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage in California, did not have standing to appeal a district court order invalidating the ban. As a result, the order went into effect, and California immediately started issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The result was surprising to some lawyers…. The alliances were unusual. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the 5-4 decision, joined by Scalia, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Steven Breyer and Elena Kagan. The dissenters, Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Sonya Sotomayor, thought the Court should decide the issue, though they surely would have split on the result. So here’s the puzzle. Why did Scalia, who has angrily dissented from every gay rights victory in the Supreme Court, join Roberts’ decision without protest? And why are conservatives not screaming at him for doing that?

Perhaps he was afraid that the Court would issue a more broadly sweeping verdict if they did actually decide the case? And why did Sotomayor side with Kennedy, Thomas, and Alito? There’s a story there…

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1 Comments so far ↓

  1. Nicole A says:

    There is no story either way. They only sided on the questions of standing for the defenders of Prop 8

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