Colorado Civil Unions Backers Seek Leverage From Prop 8 Ruling

FOX 31’s Eli Stokols:

The backers of legislation that would recognize same-sex civil unions in Colorado cheered a ruling Monday by a federal appeals court on Tuesday declared California’s voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional…

Tuesday’s 2-1 ruling by a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals declared that California’s Proposition 8, which voters approved in 2008, was a violation of the civil rights of gays and lesbians.

“Today’s ruling, if upheld, will restore the freedom to marry in California and add our nation’s largest state as another engine of progress for the country,” said [One Colorado executive director Brad] Clark.

“As this case makes its way through the courts, we will continue to pursue critical legal protections for all families here in Colorado.”

A poll follows: will today’s decision on California’s Proposition 8 help civil unions become law in Colorado? We discussed before the new role of Republican civil unions proponents in the debate–we’ll be curious to see how this decision fits into Coloradans for Freedom’s message, and whether this “activist” court ruling will harden opposition from some conservatives.

Don’t get us wrong, we know where the course of history is leading. This polls show very clearly who is winning the debate in the long run, and who is losing. This is about whether or not the Republican Party in Colorado is willing to adapt in a timeframe that does not politically damage them further–a big part of why we have “Coloradans for Freedom” to begin with.

As we’ve said, it’s really a debate within the GOP now.

[poll id=”1430″]

10 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. BlueCat says:

    on the fact that California already has civil unions:

    The California justices declared the right to marry a person of one’s own gender a fundamental right, and they declared as well that it violates state equal protection doctrine for California to treat gay and straight couples differently for purposes of marriage. California has a domestic partnership law, which grants same-sex couples virtually all of the rights and obligations of marriage, making the current dispute one of nomenclature over the use of the word “marriage,” not about the substance of marriage rights. But as their colleagues in Massachusetts did a few years ago, the California justices treated this accommodation as a kind of “separate but equal” institution–which is to say, not an equal one at all.

    If anything, this might cause the anti-gay forces to dig in their heels and fight civil unions/domestic partnerships as leading to legal recognition of gay marriage rights even harder. But they are fighting a losing battle.

    This decision is more evidence that the day is coming ,  much sooner rather than later, when bans on gay marriage will seem as antiquated as the old bans on interracial marriage.  

  2. AristotleAristotle says:

    based on what I’ve read on the blogs, is that this ruling is specifically “You can’t take back rights that have been granted.” California had granted same-sex couples the right to marry, and Prop 8 took it away, therefore it was unconstitutional.

    Since Colorado has NOT yet extended the right, either as marriage or separate-but-equal civil unions, I don’t see how this ruling can directly help.

    • California’s constitution, like those in a number of states (including Iowa), has an expansive definition of equal rights.  Prop. 8 was an attempt to revoke a right granted via the state constitution, and the finding of the Court was that there was no compelling reason to do so.

      It’s the heightened scrutiny required for the revoking an existing right and the absolutely worthless legal case made by the anti-marriage plaintiffs that made this such a huge fail.

  3. sxp151 says:

    will overturn this before it comes up for a vote here, which will make it harder to pass. So I don’t think it will help.

    • If I’m not mistaken, I believe John Roberts has a long history of doing pro-bono work for groups that were pushing equal rights for our LGBT brothers and sisters

      In addition, Anthony Kennedy, apparently, leans liberal on this issue

      Overall, what I’ve heard from Republican insiders is that John Roberts and Anthony Kennedy will favor Gay Marriage – it’s one reason why right-wingers are not hell bent to get this issue to the Supreme Court because the deck favors us (pro-gay-marriage supporters)

  4. nancycronknancycronk says:

    This might not be a complete victory, or a permanent victory, but today, it is a victory for those who are committed to justice. Today is a day to celebrate.

  5. allyncooper says:

    and as William Sloan Coffin once said, “You cannot put the freeze on history.”

    The Republicans who realize this understand who will be left on the dust heap of history, and they prefer it not be them.  

    • BlueCat says:

      are mainly indies these days. The base seems to be all about the dust heap of history, longing for a return of the fifties when blacks and women and gays knew their place. Heck, you didn’t have to allow Jews in your neighborhood if you didn’t want to.  

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