Monday, May 19, 2014

Hasn't NOM wasted enough taxpayer money?

NOM is desperate to intervene in the Oregon marriage case to represent its “members.” Actually, the reason that they want to intervene is to provide a means of delaying the inevitable. Due to the fact that the state does not oppose nullification of Oregon's marriage amendment, there is nobody with “standing” to appeal a likely Federal District Court ruling. This means that a the judge hearing this case will be the final arbiter of marriage equality in Oregon. It is similar to the situation that existed in New Jersey. If NOM could intervene they could stall matters for a year or two as cases make their way to the Supreme Court.

The issue of Article III legal “standing” was settled by the US Supreme Court in the Proposition 8 trials. The Court ruled that outside groups cannot substitute for state officials who choose not to defend a law that they feel is unconstitutional.

Yet National Organization for Marriage persists. According to a release:
The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) today filed an emergency appeal with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals asking the higher court to stay the same-sex marriage proceedings in Eugene so that NOM can argue that it should have been granted intervention status in the case in order to present a legitimate defense of the marriage amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman. If the district court judge rules today as expected to invalidate the amendment, NOM also asked the Ninth Circuit for a stay of such a ruling.
It seems like settled law to me. How is this, in any way, different from Hollingsworth v. Brown?
"This case is an ugly example of inappropriate cooperation between the Attorney General and the gay marriage lobby, both of whom want to redefine marriage in contravention of the overwhelming decision of the people to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman," said Brian S. Brown, NOM's president. "The people of Oregon are entitled to a defense of their decision on marriage rather than being abandoned in Court."
Well, the electorate does not get to determine the rights of a minority group. It is within the discretion of the state's attorney general to decide which cases it will, or will not, prosecute.
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