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Theane Evangelis Kapur Speaks on Prop. 8 Litigation

News Posted on September 12, 2011

Theane Evangelis Kapur, a member of the legal team representing the plaintiffs in Perry v. Schwarzenegger, the federal trial over California's controversial same-sex marriage ban, Proposition 8, spoke to King Hall students and faculty in the Kalmanovitz Appellate Courtroom on September 7.  In a presentation entitled "Marriage is a Fundamental Right," Kapur, an associate with the law firm of Gibson Dunn & Crutcher, described the history of the initiative, which was passed by voters in 2008, and the litigation challenging it, including the decision by a federal judge to overturn it in 2010.  Recently, legal battles have erupted over whether to release a videotape of the federal court hearings and whether proponents of the measure have standing to challenge the trial court decision in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

In Kapur's view, the evidence and legal precedents are "overwhelmingly one-sided" in support of the idea of marriage as a fundamental right guaranteed under the U.S. Constitution.  She said that public sentiment has rapidly been shifting in favor of same-sex marriage.  "We're seeing a huge trend in the right direction, and I think our case has been an important catalyst," she said.