Judge Reinhardt Tells Prop. 8 Supporters He Won't Back Down from Same Same-Sex Marriage Case
Opponents of same-sex marriage aren't happy to hear that Judge Stephen Reinhardt, a federal appeals court jurist, rejected calls to step down from a case involving the state's same-sex marriage ban.
Proponents of Prop. 8 wanted Reinhardt to recuse himself from a US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals panel on Monday that will decide the fate of an appeal of a decision that the voter initiative that defines marriage as between a man and a woman is unconstitutional.
Prop. 8 backers don't want Reinghardt to participate in the case because he is married
to Ramona Ripston, a former director of the ACLU's Southern California office.
The ACLU had filed a friend-of-the-court brief that is asking the appeals court to uphold U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker's Aug. 4 ruling overturning Proposition 8.
Prop. 8 supporters also say the federal law requires judges to recuse themselves from cases where they feel their spouses would be affected.
Despite their protests, the judge isn't budging.
In a two-page response, Reinhardt said he has recused himself from past cases but won't do so in the Prop. 8 case.
"I will be able to rule impartially on this appeal, and I will do so," said the 79-year-old judge.
With reporting from LA Now and the Washington Times
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