Seeing as how neither Attorney General Jerry Brown nor Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger want to defend Proposition 8 in court, the anti-gay marriage initiative's backers found themselves struggling to find publicly elected officials who could claim standing to fight the opposition's challenge. The Imperial County board of supervisors bailed them out in the initial trial, agreeing to serve as respondents and let the crew from the National Organization for Marriage do the heavy lifting in court. Now, it appears that Imperial County is willing to take it all the way to the Supreme Court, standing up for Prop. 8 when the governor and the attorney general won't. The Chron's Kevin Fagan has an interesting piece on the social climate in Imperial, a dusty, impoverished spit of desert on the Mexico border.
Meanwhile, there's another court taking up the issue of gay marriage — an ecclesiastical court. The Trib writes up a piece on Jane Spahr, a San Francisco Presbyterian minister for 36 years, faces a trial today for officiating at gay weddings, in violation of church teachings. The Presbyterian denomination hasn't quite made up its mind about gay marriage yet, and leaders ultimately decided to table the issue for a few years while they think about it some more. Spahr, 68, decided not to wait, and now she faces a variety of punishments, including stripping her of her ordination, although that's unlikely.