Ninth nixes 8 …
California Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom, who championed same-sex marriage while Mayor of San Francisco, was one of those who celebrated a decision last week by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, which ruled unconstitutional Proposition 8, the 2008 California ballot measure that banned same sex marriage.
“Proposition 8 serves no purpose, and has no effect, other than to lessen the status and human dignity of gays and lesbians in California, and to officially reclassify their relationships and families as inferior to those of opposite-sex couples,” Judge Stephen Reinhardt wrote in the majority 2-1 opinion for the three-member panel.
The majority affirmed a lower court’s ruling, which drew on the Constitution and Supreme Court precedent in declaring that Proposition 8 violated the civil rights of people in same-sex marriages. The court’s ruling hinges on the fact that thousands of gays and lesbians were able to marry in California in the months leading up to the November 2008 vote on the ballot measure. The court found that there is a higher burden for removing rights that have already been awarded.
Same-sex marriages will not be able to resume immediately in California, since the court temporarily continued an order blocking them while litigation continues. –AP/Los Angeles Times
Voters seek clarity on pot
It would appear that local governments aren’t the only ones tired of the lack of clarity on regulations and distribution when it comes to medical marijuana.
According to data from Probolsky Research shows that a majority of voters (59.2%) would support the California Medical Marijuana Regulation Act, a potential initiative for the November ballot. This initiative is intended to meet the calls of local officials who have asked for more guidance in developing consistent and clear guidelines on medical marijuana distribution, but clearly Californians want clearer and concrete guidance as well.
Specifically, this measure would create a state enforcement division to regulate and control all entities involved in the commercial cultivation, manufacture, distribution, and sale of medical marijuana in California; it also requires their mandatory registration with the state and establishes a state excise tax on all medical marijuana grown for sale in California. –California County News