Perry: Trial may be televised – UPDATED

by on December 16, 2009  •  In Uncategorized

At the pre-trial conference today in Perry v. Schwarzenegger, Judge Walker told the parties that there is a chance that the trial will be televised.  According to a news report, Judge Walker will wait to decide whether to allow cameras until the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference issues a pending rule on whether or under what terms civil nonjury trials may be telecast.

The judge also announced that the major issue outstanding before trial – a dispute over release of campaign documents, sought by plaintiffs in discovery – will be decided by the Ninth Circuit en banc. A three-judge panel ruled last week that the documents were protected by the First Amendment's shield for political speech. The appeal is on an expedited schedule.

The trial date is holding: Judge Walker announced that "It will be my plan to proceed beginning at 9 a.m. on Jan. 11."

UPDATE 12/18/09 – The Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference approved a system that will allow televising of nonjury civil trials that are selected by district court judges. This clears the way for Judge Walker to designate the Perry case for being telecast and/or webcast. This one move would magnify many times the impact of the trial, and might turn out to be one of the most important contributions this case will make to the effort to legalize same-sex marriage.


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