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LaMalfa Comments on Supreme Court Decision: Creates End-Run Around Initiative Process

Statement

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

Rep. Doug LaMalfa (R-CA) today commented the Supreme Court's ruling that citizen defendants of Proposition 8, which defined legal marriage in California as between a man and a woman, had no legal standing and thus could not challenge a lower court's ruling overturning the law. This decision effectively overturns the proposition in California. LaMalfa not only opposed the Court's failure to defend traditional marriage, he also expressed deep concerns that the ruling seriously damaged California's initiative process.

"Today the Court decided that California's initiative process, created to allow voters the means to go around unresponsive elected officials, is null and void if those very same elected officials choose not to defend it in court. All Californians should be very concerned about this precedent, regardless of their position on marriage," said LaMalfa. "Could we now see other initiatives protecting individual rights or preventing tax increases overturned if Attorney General Harris and Governor Brown refuse to defend them for political reasons? Today's decision drastically weakened the ability of average Californians to use the initiative, undermining the basic tools of the state's direct democracy."

LaMalfa, who was an early supporter of Proposition 22 and Proposition 8, stated his disappointment with the unwillingness of the Court to support traditional marriage.

"I am disappointed that the Court chose not to defend traditional marriage, which California's voters have twice supported at the ballot box. Perhaps most disturbing is that while the Court previously engaged in legal gymnastics to uphold the President's health care takeover, it refused to recognize the right of citizens to defend measures passed by initiative," LaMalfa added. "Families with both a mother and a father are the basic building block of our society, and we should not abandon thousands of years of history lightly."

Congressman Doug LaMalfa is a lifelong farmer representing California's First Congressional District including Butte, Glenn, Lassen, Modoc, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Shasta, Sierra, Siskiyou and Tehama Counties.


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