Harvard Law Review

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Reaction: A Marriage is a Marriage is a Marriage: The Limits of Perry v. Brown

Robin West :: The Ninth Circuit’s decision in Perry v. Brown, authored by Judge Reinhardt, has been widely lauded in the last few weeks by marriage equality proponents for its creative minimalism. In keeping with commentators’ expectations, the court found a way to determine that California’s Proposition 8 violated the U.S. Constitution’s Equal Protection Clause, namely that the provision took away an entitlement that had previously been enjoyed by same-sex couples — the right to the appellation of one’s partnership as a “marriage” — for no rational reason. The People of California’s categorization and differential treatment of same-sex couples as compared with opposite-sex couples, the court held, failed the test of minimal rationality required for upholding state action. The two types of couples were simply too indistinguishable to carry the weight of the difference between them that the People of California had tried to codify. Thus, the court struck down the state constitutional amendment.  READ MORE

 

 

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