Prop 8 Videos Remain Sealed
The panel of three judges said they sealed the video because then U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker promised defenders that the video would not be broadcast, reports the San Francisco Examiner.
“The interest in preserving respect for our system of justice is clearly a compelling reason for maintaining the seal on the recording,” the court told the L.A. Times.
Same-sex marriage proponents said the public was being denied the opportunity to see “the baseless foundation of fear” Prop 8 opponents used during the proceedings, according to the L.A. Times.
Walker ruled that Proposition 8 violated the U.S. constitution. That ruling is currently being appealed in the 9th Circuit. The decision is expected to come soon. It is also widely believed that it will eventually go to the Supreme Court.
The ruling overturned a lower court decision in favor of making the video public. Walker’s successor, Chief U.S. District Judge James Ware ruled that the videos were part of the trial record and should be released. Ware said that Walker did not give a guarantee of permanent secrecy and other judges were not bounded to keep the tapes secret. Ware said that the tapes should be released due to great public interest.
Walker upset people last year when he showed part of the testimony from the trial. ProtectMarriage went to the U.S. Supreme Court and obtained a ruling preventing further broadcasting of the trial. The panel said that the U.S. Supreme Court would likely veto public release of the video, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
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