just don't get all in our face about it

Appeals Court Mandates That All Californians Get Gay Married

The despised liberal 9th Circuit federal appeals court, which Newt Gingrich has pledged to pipe-bomb on his first day as president, ruled today that California’s Proposition 8, a law in which a bunch of out-of-state Mormons took away marriages from same-sex married couples, is unconstitutional. This upheld the original ruling by district court Judge Vaughn Walker. Now it’s almost certain that the fate of gay marriage in the United States will go to the Supreme Court and be determined by Anthony Kennedy, after he determines the fate of health care in the United States.

Just check out how liberal this 9th Circuit judge was!

“Although the Constitution permits communities to enact most laws they believe to be desirable, it requires that there be at least a legitimate reason for the passage of a law that treats different people differently,” Judge Stephen Reinhardt wrote in the decision. “There was no such reason that Proposition 8 could have been enacted.”

“All that Proposition 8 accomplished was to take away from same sex-couples the right to be granted marriage licenses and thus legally to use the designation ‘marriage,” the judge wrote, adding: “Proposition 8 serves no purpose, and has no effect, other than to lessen the status and human dignity of gay men and lesbians in California.”

In other analysis, the Washington Post‘s Greg Sargent, who’s always one tax form signature away from being an official Barack Obama campaign spokesperson, somehow spins this as a victory for Obama. We didn’t know this had anything to do with him.

About the author

Jim Newell is Wonkette's beloved Capitol Hill Typing Demon. He joined Wonkette.com in 2007, left for some other dumb job in 2010, and proudly returned in 2012 as our "Senior Editor at Large." He lives in Washington and also writes for things such as The Guardian, the Manchester paper of liberals.

View all articles by Jim Newell
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  1. Tengu

    Win-Win Solution:
    Allow gay people to marry but after they die the Mormons can perform mystic ceremonies to have those marriages annulled in LDS heaven.

    1. Sparky MacGyver

      That's the kind of thinking that we need around here. You're definitely management material! Either that, or soylent green fixin's.

    2. Biel_ze_Bubba

      I suspect that gay Mormons don't get a planet stocked with young studly-looking cabana boys after they die… what, exactly, are they supposed to do? Does Moroni come along and "cure" the gay Mormon zombies?

      (I was hoping to make it GAY MORMON ZOMBIES™, but damned if the Googlez didn't notice someone else being equally perverse.)

  2. MissTaken

    And to celebrate, here in SF it's finally raining. It's raining men, Hallelujah, it's raining men!

    1. SorosBot

      But, this being in San Francisco and in celebration of the gay marriage victory, sadly I doubt any of those men would be interested in you.

      1. MissTaken

        True, but after leering at the boys for a bit I can meander down to Valencia and meet a few lesbians. I'm sure I could find one or two that would be interested.

          1. glasspusher

            Monsieur_Grumpe, I've been using that line for years. Great minds think alike, but fools never disagree!

    2. OneYieldRegular

      See? If Rick Perry had just embraced gay marriage instead of praying for rain, Texas' drought would have been over long ago.

  3. SoBeach

    "Appeals Court Mandates That All Californians Get Gay Married"

    After what it cost me to get straight-divorced ain't no way I'm gettin' any kind of married ever again.

    1. Katydid

      After my also straight divorce I swore I was going gay. Didn't take, but I hear you, and second that emotion.

    2. Man0nTheStreet

      That's why Jesus outlawed straight-divorce in Mark 10:1-12. He didn't say anything about Teh Gheys, 'tho…

    1. CessnaDriver

      I know you are joking, but it actually is. One justice on the 9th calls it "A National Treasure".

      The 9th Circuit courthouse in Pasadena is really terrific-they furnished it completely with items from Federal storage houses. The offices on the south side have a view of Catalina on a good day.

  4. Schmannnity

    "Proposition 8 serves no purpose, and has no effect, other than to lessen the status and human dignity of gay men and lesbians in California.”

    Whut? That was the purpose and effect.

    1. UnholyMoses

      Yep — it was a feature, not a bug, as the kids say nowadays.*

      (* Well, as far as I know. I'm old and it's hard to keep up with all the lingo.)

    1. Preferred Customer

      Hopefully, once confined to the marital bed, we won't have to see Santorum in public any more.

    2. Swampgas_Man

      Ooooh yeah. This, on top of everything else that's going to hit the neg-ads this years. Considering how excited that freak gets about the gays, I expect him to reach a frothy mixture hitherto unknown!

    1. tessiee

      Wait till all those newly married gay couples have to write six slightly different thank you notes for the six identical Mr. Coffees they got as wedding presents.

  5. slithytoves

    The despised liberal 9th Circuit federal appeals court, which Newt Gingrich has pledged to pipe-bomb.

    That's a hell of a double entendre.

      1. chitrade

        The posts all have merit, of course. But every time my cursor hovers, I can't help but notice the Hole in my Heart where the Snark Used to Be.

        1. Lascauxcaveman

          Maybe he forgot how do alt-text, since they don't do that over at Gawker. No, wait. He never did it here either. I'm OK with that, just as long as he waves his magic wand over an occasional Peggy Noonan column.

      2. chascates

        Newell was never completely 'wedded' to the idea of alt-text. Sometimes you get one, sometimes you don't.

        Snark is like a box of chocolates.

    1. BerkeleyBear

      It would be really hard to get legislative approval to repeal the 2004 ban (one house is split right down the middle and dems hold a one seat majority in the other) – although there might be some Rs from rich but not socially conservative areas that would support it. There's talk of putting it on the ballot in 2014, but the big advocacy groups didn't push for 2012 based on small sample polling last year. They also already have domestic partnerships, which gets used as a club by the Defense of Marriage idiots to try and claim that this is all part of the gay predatory conspiracy. So Oregon will probably bring up the rear, again. Damn lumberjacks!

  6. jus_wonderin

    Oh, I had been reading that wrong all along. It's not Position 8? I was still trying to master number 1.

    1. jus_wonderin

      I've always had this hankerin' to legislate from the bench. Hoping I could feed the squirrels too. And maybe heckle hot babes.

    2. tessiee

      "I want to be a swing judge."

      I do enjoy the music; it's just too bad that the black robe covers up your zoot suit.

  7. KeepFnThatChicken

    Now it's time for the annual clamor for the Federal Constitutional Amendment rebuke from conservatards, who otherwise love states' rights so much they'd gay marry it if possible.

    1. Steverino247

      Wait until I tell my wife!

      Honey, I'm home! Did you hear the news? The Ninth Circuit says "No holes barred when it comes to marriage!"

    2. CessnaDriver

      Orange County Republicans were actually told that middle school students were going to be forces to try the homo stuff if Prop H8 didn't pass.

  8. YouBetcha

    Suck it, Mormons! All that money on Prop 8 was obviously wasted. Maybe invest in more magical underwears next time. Or porn.

    1. elviouslyqueer

      Today's to-do list, from My Big Ole Gay Agenda:

      1) Ruin third marriage of adulterous egomaniacal porcine GOP clown car driver. √

    2. chicken_thief

      Who knows, maybe him and Rush will divorce their current trophies, marry each other, and live happily ever after!

      1. SayItWithWookies

        Even better, they'd each have to quit public life so they could argue full-time with each other.

  9. UW8316154

    Those rabid NOM wingnuts are already filtering through Washington State, laying the groundwork a similar signature-gathering effort here. The lies and rhetoric are shameful and insidious.

    Waste your time and money, h8trs.

    1. BerkeleyBear

      Yeah, they've discovered (and we can all thank California for this) that disingenuous campaigning works really well in referendums, where people don't have the time or process they do in a legislative setting to at least try and get the facts on the record.

      And I'm not even talking about Prop 8. Prop 13 (anti-taxes) set the standard, followed by Uncle Ward Connellys "color-blind" bullshit and various anti-immigrant hatefests. Every one of them was a case study in sleaze and half-truth telling.

      1. emmelemm

        Also, too, the text of referendums and initiatives, particularly on this gay marriage issue, become highly confusing. "Wait, I'm voting to NOT repeal something?"

        People are dumb. Fact of life.

    2. GOPCrusher

      They showed up in Iowa and spent 10,000 bucks on a special campaign to try to gain a Senate seat. They failed miserably.
      But the Council on Families or whatever the fuck they call themselves, have vowed, it doesn't matter if it takes 30 years, they will pass a Constitutional Amendment in Iowa making same sex marriage illegal.

  10. WhatTheHeck

    The Supremes will hand down its ruling: “Sure they can get married. They just can’t live together.”

  11. MissTaken

    “Proposition 8 serves no purpose, and has no effect, other than to lessen the status and human dignity of gay men and lesbians in California.”

    I think I just had an orgasm. Yup, definitely an orgasm.

      1. glasspusher

        woman at cocktail party:"I finally had an orgasm, and my doctor said it was the wrong kind"

        Alfie Singer:"Really!? That never happened to me. Worst one I had was right on the money"

    1. Steverino247

      Here's what CalTech said about it:

      Version #2: This report supersedes any earlier reports of this event. This event has been reviewed by a seismologist (lucky bastard).

      An earthquake occurred at 12:31:24 PM (PST) on Tuesday, February 7, 2012.
      The magnitude 4.1 event occurred near San Francisco, CA.
      The hypocentral depth is 7 inches.

        1. Steverino247

          "An earthquake's hypocenter is the position where the strain energy stored in the rock is first released, marking the point where the fault begins to rupture. This occurs at the focal depth below the epicenter."

          The focus is on where you feel it. Which is as it should be.

          And let us all know if you're going above 4.0 again, sweetie, so we can get under a table next time. Thanks.

          1. SorosBot

            Oh this is the internet; I can have infinite browser tabs, er, eyes.

            Besides I like the way you turn other men (and some women) on.

    2. Man0nTheStreet

      That wasn't an orgasm, it was an earthquake – cause by God clapping Her hands in approval…

  12. BaldarTFlagass

    Re the pic, do gay men still dress like they're extras in Saturday Night Fever? None of the gay men I know do that, but here in South Texas they'd be taking their life in their hands if they did so.

    1. MiniMencken

      In South Texas, the gays dress like extras in Travolta's subsequent nightclubbin' movie, Urban Cowboy.

  13. Data Exactly

    Well, looks like Newt Gingrich won't be through like Wonkette convinced me of last time. It's stuff like this that keeps Newt in the biz longer…

    Well, one more Newt is fat joke, for the road: Newt Gingrich is so fat, when he gains any weight Mt. Everest loses some of it's prominence.

  14. MildMidwesterner

    The Supreme Court will certainly approve of gay marriage. After all, 7 of the members are men who wear long dresses to work.

      1. actor212

        Right? I mean, you know, what will the kids think? hell, What will Carmen Electra think? Poor kid wakes up next to me, naked, and married….

  15. Maman

    Oh, I am sure that they do that already in Mormon heaven. Particularly since women can't get there without being dragged in by some guy. It's not polygamy that way. It is the salvation of spinsters!

  16. SorosBot

    Really, with the combination of Lawrence v Texas and Loving v Virginia I see no legitimate legal reason for the Supreme Court to allow laws against same sex marriage to stand; but yeah this will all come down to Kennedy and he's often good at pulling an excuse not to do the right thing out of his ass.

    1. DeeJayKitteh

      I actually doubt that the Court will grant cert on this — the ruling was limited to California and was premised on first giving gays the right to marry and then taking it away. So my guess is that we're going to have wait quite a bit longer before we find out if Kennedy is a queer-loving pinko or good old 'Murika-loving patriot.

        1. BerkeleyBear

          My experience is that hate can keep you alive and seemingly healthy for a lot longer than expected. So I sadly expect little Antonin to outlive his less dickish colleague by a decade or more.

          1. tessiee

            Hey, listen, if YOU know of a place that sells silver bullets, the rest of us would all like to hear it.

      1. BerkeleyBear

        Trouble is you only need the 4 votes for cert and Scalia, Roberts, Thomas and Alito seem more than happy to take any crack at taking sides in the "social wars" (as Scalia calls them) that they can. I mean, on health care they extended cert to consider a frivolous argument by states that the government can't change Medicaid's terms because they didn't "bargain" for it, never mind decades of precedent and the very nature of the program. So I could totally see these bozos champing at the bit to posit all sorts of plausible rationales for anti-gay marriage efforts, either with Kennedy as a tag along or in dissents that will serve as blueprints for NOM in every other state the issue comes up.

    1. DeeJayKitteh

      If your idea of "fun" includes rage-inducing intellectual dishonesty and bigotry dressed up to sound like legal reasoning, then it's going to be a freakin' party.

      1. Biel_ze_Bubba

        Having just proclaimed that "if it ain't mentioned in the Constitution, the states can do whatever the hell they want," Scalia will have his undies in a bind if he grants cert. Or maybe he'll shamelessly ignore his own "principles", as he's wont to do when they prove inconvenient.

    2. tessiee

      "It will be big fun to read Scalia's opinion on this case"

      How long does it take to read the words, "Stu'gotts"?

  17. jus_wonderin

    I think this non sequitur applies: "Nick..Heath..Jared..There's a Fire in the Barn!" (I use it too much, but it is just priceless."

  18. chascates

    This may not be on the Supreme's docket until after the 2012 election so it'll be a GOP rallying cry:
    Activist judges usurp Founders unstated prohibition of sodomy and other things we imagine they wouldn't like if they knew what it was. SAN FRANCISCO VALUES!!!!
    Vote for (to be determined) to save YOUR marriage and keep your children free from gay-marryin' elitists!

  19. BarackMyWorld


    *Any judge who issues a ruling that Roger Ailes or the Koch Brothers don't care for.

  20. Lionel[redacted]Esq

    And after teh Ghayez marry, and start producing little gay children, they will just take over the whole country. Are you happy now 9th Cir?

  21. Guppy

    It reads like the court would have been cool with it if gay marriage hadn't been previously allowed to begin with.

    Here's your grain of salt for the day.

  22. Jukesgrrl

    Ah, the mysteries of the conservative dictionary:

    Marriage = Man and woman only
    Activist = Judge whose opinions they don't like
    War = Spreading democracy
    Corporations = People
    Terrorist = Protester
    Fetus = Mozart
    Music = Taylor Swift

    1. flamingpdog

      They'll make it up in two days by getting a revelation from God that tithing means 12 percent.

    2. comrad_darkness

      This could be a net import scam for California. Pass some legislation that get's the mormon closet cases all hot and bothered, forcing them to spend megabucks to overturn it, IN California. Profit!

  23. BigDumbRedDog

    I personally can't wait for the gay marriage legislation in Washington (state for you east coast dumbies) to go to a referendum. I am already keeping a list of where I want to tell each of the signature gatherers to go. And then I will get a summer's worth of hate and vitriol and hand wringing "fair and balanced" reporting in the Seattle Times. The Seattle Times websites comments section is an amazing cesspool of teatards and bigots. I have no idea where they all come from. Mostly not Seattle.

  24. Baconzgood

    I looked over at the Blaze (I know guilty pleasure-don't judge me) and you should read the hate spewing from the Right Wingers.

  25. neiltheblaze

    This is one small step – but nevertheless a good day for anyone who thinks it sucks that a mathematical majority of voters gets to decide whether a minority can "retain" a right or not.

  26. imissopus

    True story: the morning after the '08 election, I had stopped at Starbucks on my way to work here in L.A. As I'm leaving a woman had just parked her Range Rover at the curb and was climbing out. Her friend seated at one of the outdoor tables called out, "How are you doing today, honey?"

    Range Rover Driver responded: "I am so fucking pissed! Was it the fucking Mormons?"

    I hope that lady is less pissed today.

    1. Steverino247

      Oh, it already is. There are some divorces already from those who were able to legally marry. And yes, they're just as ugly as anybody else's divorce.

      You know, I don't get it. Six months ago, they're (straights and gays) licking each other's genitals and moaning. Today, he/she is the worst person in the world. Go figure.

  27. Baconzgood

    Today we're all married California ass pirates!!!!!!!

    (BTW to the "gay mafia"-I'm not a homophobe I'm just snarking here for enviouslyquer)

  28. rickmaci

    In other news, divorce lawyers in California are celebrating the creation of a brand new source of potential clients….

  29. chicken_thief

    Oh fuck me! I might as well go kneel by a glory hole now 'cause we know the librul judges will cram the decision to perform oral down our throats, too.

    ~ Larry Craig

  30. Negligently_Joe

    Damn, now all of my friends' marriages are undermined. Because one half of each pair is from California, they're all now forced by this court decision to break up from their new relationships and get gay married instead.

    At least, I'm pretty sure that's what it means.

  31. owhatever

    Rush and Newt, having tried seven women wives between them, are looking at California and thinking…maybe…

  32. Negligently_Joe

    Also, I'm going to assume that Newt Gingrich is LIVID, as this decision totally undermines his marriage to his third wife, who me met as a result of an affair (and open marriage request) and subsequent unceremonious dumping of his ailing second wife, who he met as a result of an affair while married to his also-ailing first wife, who was his high school math teacher.

      1. Negligently_Joe

        Look, all right-thinking Americans know that real Traditional Marriage consistent with HISTORIC VALUES are between one man, one math teacher, one blowjob-giving congressional aide, and one other woman in-between and overlapping with each of those first two.

  33. dijetlo

    "After a time, you may find that having is not so pleasing a thing, after all, as wanting. It is not logical, but it is often true."
    – Spock

      1. dijetlo

        I rejoice in their joy. However, I've already bitten the apple and therefor am familiar with the serpent.

  34. thefrontpage


    Twowives, Utah, Feb. 7, 2012—Presidential candidate Mittt Romney issued this statement today, Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2012, about the progressive and forward-thinking decision by the Califoria courts and judges: "what a wonderful, fabulous decision this is today, for all people, not only in California, but around the world! I fully, completely and wholly support this decision! Gay and lesbian people all around the world should have the same constitutional rights to get married as all other people–and that includes gay Mormons. So congrats to all of the gay and lesbian people today! I hope to attende a gay wedding in California–and Utah–soon myself!"

  35. TinyDespot

    This is gonna rain all over Stephanie Meyers' parade for the big "Twihard 2: Breaking Wind" opening this weekend. Almost warms the cockles of my cold black heart.

  36. Troglodeity

    "That government is best which governs least." – Henry David Thoreau

    "Except when it comes to gays, lesbians, and uteruses." – 2012 GOP Amendment

  37. BigDumbRedDog

    I'm torn. I hate santorum the way I hate the fungus between my toes, yet I am kind of happy when he does well making the right wing slightly crazier than before. take that mittens!

  38. KeepFnThatChicken

    I always found it fantastic that the United States gubbermint once made those magic-speedo-wearin' people wholly denounce polygamic practices before they could achieve statehood. They had to reject a single, notable tenet of their belief system.

    So, Mormons, you want to 'splain again how important those goddamn beliefs really are?

  39. BerkeleyBear

    Make sure that when you ask, you ask a black mormon, since he was considered marked by god with sin before the 1970s. Oh, and if you can do it while he's slurping a Coke (which was supposed to be evil in the 80s but now is ok in moderation because it isn't "hot", but iced coffee and tea are still works of the devil) that would be awesome.

    Don't get me wrong – every organized religion has a shitload of hypocrisy and flip flopping. It just seems the LDS is much more cavalier about it than anyone else, like the tenets of the faithful are a series of switches to be turned off and on as necessary.

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