In a brief, pointed order, U.S. District Court Judge Vaughn Walker on Wednesday made clear that he did not get what he wanted from the parties’ most recent filing in the Perry v. Schwarzenegger Proposition 8 court challenge. The order calls on “all parties, including all government defendants” to provide a more detailed case management filing to him by noon Monday. Judge Walker’s order directs the parties to include:
(1) The specific elements of the claims plaintiffs assert and the defenses, if any, defendants and intervenors contend apply;
(2) Admissions and stipulations that the parties are prepared to enter with respect to the foregoing elements and applicable defenses at issue;
(3) Discovery that the parties seek that may lead to the discovery of admissible evidence with reference to:
(a) Level of scrutiny relevant to plaintiffs’ claims;
(b) The campaign by which Proposition 8 was adopted;
(c) Character of the rights plaintiffs contend are infringed or violated;
(d) Effect of Proposition 8 upon plaintiffs and similarly situated individuals;
(e) Effect of Proposition 8 on opposite-sex couples and others not in same-sex relationships in California; and
(f) Other issues pertinent to the parties’ claims or defenses;
(4) Subject matter (by discipline or expertise) of the opinion/expert evidence that the parties intend to present.
The CA Attorney General has agreed with the plaintiffs that Prop8 violates the Equal Protection Clause. And the judge is requiring that the defendants produce compelling evidence that same-sex marriage weakens traditional marriage and that children should be raised only in opposite-sex households.
And all this laid out by Wednesday.
This case is being fast-tracked in the Federal System. It has a make-or-break potential for marriage equality.
Update more about the case and lead attorney Ted Olson in the NY Times