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MCLE: How Can One Judge Overturn the “Will of the People?”

  • 10 May 2011
  • 6:00 PM
  • Grand Ballroom of the Center, 938 The Alameda, San Jose, CA 95126


MCLE: How Can One Judge Overturn the “Will of the People?”

In 2008, California voters approved Proposition 8 by a margin of 52% to 48%, amending their state Constitution to state that “only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.” In 2010, a federal judge struck down Proposition 8 as against the U.S. Constitution. Have you wondered or heard others ask how a single judge can overturn the “will of the people,” or what the difference is between a state court and a federal court? In this community education event, the speakers will not only answer those questions, but also discuss a number of related issues that have featured prominently in the same-sex marriage cases. The panelists will address core principles of our system of constitutional democracy, such as checks and balances, separation of powers, protection of minorities from majority rule, the role of federal courts versus state courts, judicial independence, etc. – making these concepts spring to life through a lively discussion of their application in the marriage cases.

Co-presented by a law professor from Santa Clara U School of Law and the director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights, and moderated by a local attorney, this community education event will be an informal talk geared to an audience of non-lawyers, with a minimum of “legalese,” while still remaining interesting and informative to any lawyers who may wish to attend (and receive CLE credit for attending). The presentation will leave plenty of time at the end for a spirited Q&A session between the speakers and the audience. After the presentation, there will be light refreshments served and the opportunity to mingle with the speakers and other attendees.

Co-sponsored by the Rainbow Committee of the Santa Clara County Bar Association and the Billy DeFrank LGBT Community Center, this event is FREE for the general public and open to all who wish to attend. RSVP is required.

ATTN ATTORNEYS: Attorneys may earn CLE credit for a $35 registration fee. You must register in advance for the event with the SCCBA on line or by calling SCCBA staff at 408.287-2557.

Presentation: 6:00 pm -7:30 pm

Refreshments: 7:30 pm -8:00 pm

Tuesday, May 10, 2011 (6:00 PM – 8:00 PM)

Billy DeFrank LGBT Community Center

Grand Ballroom of the Center

938 The Alameda

San Jose, CA 95126

MCLE Credit: 1.5 General Substantive Law

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