Bush v Gore attorneys file federal challenge to Prop 8
A new lawsuit challenging Prop 8 was filed in federal court Tuesday on behalf of two same sex couples. Some in the LGBT community are questioning the motives of one of the attorneys — and the strategy employed by both.
News that conservative attorney Ted Olson was filing a challenge to Prop 8 shocked many in the LGBT community.
Olson is a high profile litigator best known for successfully representing George W. Bush in Bush v. Gore – the US Supreme Court case that won Bush the election in 2000.
Olson’s co-counsel in the marriage equality case is David Boise – who represented Vice President Al Gore in that case.
Olson addressed the suspicions about him at a news conference in Los Angeles on Wednesday.
Olson: “I hope people don’t suspect my motives; I feel very strongly that this is the right position, right position for America, I hope people will believe me.”
Olson and Boise were hired by two same sex couples who approached them through a new LGBT rights group called the American Foundation for Equal Rights – headed by gay Hollywood politico Chad Griffin.
The lawsuit seeks an injunction against enforcement of Prop 8 until the case is settled. But there are serious concerns about the outcome of the case in a conservative federal court system. All nine national gay rights groups issued a joint press release warning that what they called “ill-timed” lawsuits could set back the fight for marriage equality.
Olson said they don’t intend to fail the same-sex couples seeking equal marriage.
Olson: “We are not going to say to them, ‘Why don’t you wait for another ten years or fifteen years. We can’t say that to them. We think they’re right, we think their constitutional rights are being denied, and we’re going to help them achieve that equality.”
The case has already been assigned a judge in Northern California though not date has been set.
–Karen Ocamb, Los Angeles.