Monday, November 29, 2010

3 Judge Panel for Prop 8 Appeal Announced

It's Judges Stephen Reinhardt, Michael Daly Hawkins, and N. Randy Smith of the Ninth Circuit.

Pro counterfeit "marriage" law Professor Dale Carpenter says this is a good draw for the opponents of Prop 8. Judge Reinhardt is considered to be the most liberal federal judge in the land.

On the other hand, Orin Kerr writes:

"...I would think it is bad news for opponents of Prop 8 in the long term. It goes without saying that Reinhardt will vote the liberal way, and he’ll likely have Hawkins with him. But the word “Reinhardt” is radioactive at 1 First Street. Reinhardt writes like there is no Supreme Court, and as a result his opinions have a remarkable ability to annoy the Justices. In return, the Supreme Court loves to reverse Reinhardt. They love to reverse opinions he signs, and they love to reverse opinions he participates in. So the fact that he’ll likely be involved in the panel decision probably hurts opponents of Prop 8 in the long run."

The great Ed Whelan points out:

"As regular Bench Memos readers know, Reinhardt (appointed by President Carter in 1980) may well be the most aggressive liberal judicial activist in the nation—and the most reversed judge in history."

Whatever happens, the case will go to the Supreme Court.

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