Contact: Karen England, Capitol Resource Institute, 916-212-5607, firstname.lastname@example.org
SACRAMENTO, Sept. 14 /Christian Newswire/ -- The deadline for Lt. Governor, Abel Maldonado to file an appeal to a federal court decision overturning California's voter approved Proposition 8 passed Monday without the acting governor responding to the pleas for him to assure that the case be heard in the appellate courts. In an eight hour period, Proposition 8 supporters called, and sent messages by FAX, text and social media asking the acting governor to sign the appeal. But Maldonado refused to address the issue.
Although the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has agreed to hear the appeal in December, they have indicated that the proponents of the measure, who filed the appeal, may not have standing to defend the initiative in court. The Attorney General and the Governor could have assured that the case would be heard merely by filing the appeal, which is part of their role according to California law. Each refused to do so based on their personal support for same sex marriages.
However, when the Governor left the State late last week, the right and responsibility to file the appeal before Monday's deadline went to the acting governor, Mr. Maldonado. As a supporter of Proposition 8, conservative leaders requested that he file the paperwork. Former dean of Chapman Law School, John Eastman even drafted the necessary paperwork and volunteered to make the filing on Maldonado's behalf.
But Maldonado did not even bother to respond. When a representative of Capitol Resource Institute contacted Maldonado's campaign manager a half hour before the deadline to file, the aide complained that phone calls had tied up the phones all day at the capitol and their campaign office, but he did not know what the Lt. Governor was going to do. He promised to call back, but the call never came.
"Maldonado did not file the appeal" said Karen England, Executive Director of Capitol Resource Institute. "And the acting governor added to this negligence an arrogance and aloofness that suggested he was more concerned that we busied his phones than anything else."
While Maldonado could have assured the parties had standing, his failure may not be critical to the issue being heard by the appellate court. According to Eastman, "the massive effort by the citizens of California to persuade the acting governor to file the appeal is one more piece of evidence to be presented in court to show that every effort was made to have the State defend this measure. This will hopefully tilt the Court toward holding that the proponents of the initiative have standing even absent the government defendants."
Proposition 8 should proceed through the courts despite the lack of cooperation from the State's top elected officials, but many see this issue as damaging Maldonado's political future. They are questioning his judgment as well as his independence. According to England, "the position of lieutenant governor is clearly a warm up for being governor. But Maldonado showed he is not ready to lead." Eastman concurred noting, "the Lieutenant Governor may think he showed independence by not responding to the pleas of the pro family community. But that is rather hollow coming from someone who appears to be following the directions of a governor half a world away."
LA Times urges The AG and Governor to Defend Prop 8
Assembly Republicans Unanimously Call On Governor To Order An Appeal Filed In Prop. 8 Case
Read AN OPEN LETTER TO ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER, GOVERNOR, STATE OF CALIFORNIA -- By John Eastman, Constitutional Law Attorney
Capitol Resource Institute's mission is to educate, advocate, protect, and defend family-friendly policies in California's state legislature and at the local government level. Capitol Resource Institute is a 501c3 non-profit organization and all donations are tax-deductible.