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Prop 8 Trial: Day 11 Recap & Day 12 Preview

Plaintiff Attorney David Boies | AP Photo/Paul Sakuma
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Week 3 of the federal case against Prop 8, which banned gay marriage in California, continues on today with the defense--the sponsors of the initiative---presenting their case. Here's what each legal team is saying about the case:

  • Plaintiffs via e-mail (pro gay marriage): "The trial is culminating with the defendants' own witnesses making the plaintiffs' case, and crumbling under cross examination."
  • Defendants via their blog (pro traditional marriage): "The plaintiffs continue to throw things against the courtroom wall in hopes that something will stick. The trouble is, their target isn’t the law. They’ve missed the mark in terms of legal arguments and therefore have to rely on strictly emotional appeals for sympathy."
  • Plaintiffs: "The day started with Boies continuing his withering cross-examination of the defendants' witness Prof. Kenneth Miller, who was attempting to make the case that gays and lesbians are not politically vulnerable. Miller testified, however, that Prop. 8 was passed at least in part due to 'anti-gay stereotypes' and 'prejudice.'"
  • Defense: "Dr. Miller’s testimony provided an impenetrable roadblock, establishing that—while religious views were certainly one of many factors that informed some voters’ support for Prop 8—no exit poll or voter study has shown that religion alone determined the result of the election."
  • Plaintiffs on the Defense's Second Expert: "Along with undermining his credibility, [David] Blankenhorn's testimony helped make the plaintiffs' case. 'I believe homophobia is a real presence in our society,' he testified. 'We would be more American on the day we permit same-sex marriage than the day before.' Blankenhorn also testified that allowing gays and lesbians to marry would improve the wellbeing of their households and their children. Among the reasons cited for opposing marriage equality, he testified, was the specter of polygamy and polyamory."
  • Defense: "The afternoon brought the testimony of our second witness, David Blankenhorn, president of the Institute for American Values, who provided his expertise on the institution of marriage, fatherhood and the family structure. He rejected the suggestion by plaintiffs that marriage is purely a private construct between two adults. Rather, he explained, marriage between a man and woman is a globally recognized and historically public institution. In fact, it is the only social relationship with a 'biological foundation' found in the complementary nature of man and woman and their ability to procreate. Across all cultures and times, no other human relationship has been more closely connected to the ultimate goal of uniting the biological, social and legal dimensions of parenthood for the raising of children."