Supporters of Prop 8, who are still fighting a losing battle in the California courts over an unconstitutional law that neither the governor nor the attorney general care to support, are back in federal court today in San Francisco to air their complaints about Judge Vaughn Walker, the man who first ruled that Prop 8 was unconstitutional. Their complaints are that Judge Walker's ruling should be invalidated based on the fact that he had a bias in the case, being himself a gay man who potentially wanted to be legally married; and they have a separate complaint about Walker's use of videos of the trial in public speeches, claiming the video was supposed to be sealed after the trial.
What everyone should understand here is that this is pure legal theater and won't go anywhere, but it's giving Prop 8 supporters more fodder for arguing their side of the culture war. (An op-ed in the NYT recently pointed out that by Yes on 8's logic, even a straight married judge would have a conflict in the case and have to recuse him/herself.) Howard Mintz of the Mercury News is live-blogging the proceedings today, and so far it sounds like Judge James Ware isn't really having it when it comes to the bias question, asking things like "Would a reasonable person believe a black judge would be biased in a civil rights case?"
Though it was widely known that Judge Walker was gay when he was assigned to the Prop 8 case, he had not publicly come out of the closet -- which he did after the ruling, after announcing his retirement, setting off this current maneuvering. The ruling on Prop 8 has yet to take effect, and the 9th Circuit denied a request in March to lift the stay on the ruling, pending an appeal.