Sponsors of California's ban on same-sex marriage asked a federal judge Thursday to suspend his order requiring them to disclose campaign strategy documents while they try to persuade an appeals court to overturn it.Cooper goes on to complain that being forced to hand over such sensitive documents will not only violate their First Amendment rights, an argument which Walker originally shot down, but also would force future campaigns to curtail their speech with donors and volunteers.
Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker issued the order Oct. 1 at the request of lawyers for same-sex couples challenging Proposition 8, which amended the state Constitution to define marriage as the union of a man and a woman. They say notes and e-mails between planners of last year's Prop. 8 campaign might help them prove that the ballot measure was motivated by anti-gay discrimination.
Lawyers for the Yes on 8 campaign say voters were entitled to reaffirm the traditional definition of marriage and that the organizers' alleged motives are irrelevant. In Thursday's filing, they asked Walker for a stay while they sought immediate review of his order in the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Oh, and Cooper also claims that this is just a tactic by LGBT groups to review the Yes on 8 strategy in order to prepare for a future initiative campaign.
Basically, he's throwing a hissy fit because he didn't get his way.
First, this is obviously a stall tactic. They don't want to go to trial in January and so they hope this will cause a delay. But it's inevitable, so their going to look bad either way.
Second, how does this violate their First Amendment right of free speech? They can spew all the hate they want - unfortunately, that's their right. However, the First Amendment doesn't protect them from the consequences. Hence this trial.
Third, I play a tiny violin for them that this may keep them from spewing more hate in the future when then they try and delude people into volunteering and donating to their hypocritical campaigns.
And lastly, does Cooper really think that the Yes on 8 campaign strategy is a secret? They're a broken record, repeating themselves over and over in Maine what they vomited up here in California. It doesn't take a scientist to figure out that their strategy is to confuse people on the marriage issue by distracting voters into thinking it's about children and schools.
Cooper just fears that the documents will be revealed in court, and even worse, possibly to the public. They're probably filled with landmines that could prove that the people behind Yes on Prop 8 couldn't care less about marriage and more about hurting LGBT citizens.
But if they have truly nothing to hide, as they claim, then what's the problem, right? Riiiight.
Image of Charles Cooper by blogger Michael Petrelis from his report on the lawsuit.
Defendant-Intervenors Motion to Stay Judge Walker's Discovery Order
Added 5:45pm PST: Proposition 8 and the Right to Marry blog has some good comments on this new development, including commenter and attorney Rick Xiao stating, "Given the clear indication that Judge Walker is proceeding expeditiously to trial, these latest filings suggest that Prop. 8 proponents are pursuing a new strategy focusing more on procedural tactics which could limit discovery available to plaintiffs and pose obstacles to the fact-track trial scheduling."