Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Diaz v. Brewer (9th Cir. - April 3, 2012)

The Ninth Circuit held that it was unconstitutional for Arizona to take away benefits from domestic partners.  A judge requested an en banc vote, and the vote failed.  So there was the usual filing of a dissent from the denial of rehearing en banc.  To vent and/or to hint that the Supreme Court should grant certiorari.

But only two judges sign on.  Judge O'Scannlain authors the dissent.  Judge Bea joins him.  No one else.

Which shows you how quickly jurisprudence can change sometimes.  Thirty years ago, you'd have had a hard time finding two judges to join an opinion that made the ruling that the panel did.  Nowadays we see only a couple of judges dissenting from the refusal to take it en banc.

For better or worse -- and, to be clear, I think it's for the better -- it's a different world these days.  At least on this topic.