Supreme Court votes to block broadcasts of Prop 8 trial

The Supreme Court ruled Wednesday to ban widespread broadcasting of the landmark Proposition 8 trial, blocking the planned broadcasts of the trial on

The Los Angeles Times reported Wednesday that the Supreme Court voted 5-4 to disallow the broadcasts of the trial challenging California’s Proposition 8, which bans gay marriage in the state.

The justices cited improper procedures in approving broadcasting of the trial, overturning a previous ruling by Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker in a 5-4 vote.

“It appears the courts below did not follow the appropriate procedures set forth in federal law before changing their rules to allow such broadcasting,” said the court in its 17-page ruling, posted on

Although a California federal trial has never been broadcast before, Walker’s decision allowed real-time streaming of the Proposition 8 trial at courthouses in San Francisco, Pasadena, Seattle, Portland, Ore. and Brooklyn, N.Y. Walker also approved to post taped videos of the trial on YouTube on a later date.

Now, the trial can only be viewed on TV in a courtroom at the Golden Gate Avenue courthouse, where the trial is taking place, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Vincent Vigil, the director of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Resource Center at USC, said he believed there would have been certain benefits to broadcasting the trial.

“We need to be aware of the tactics that were used by the people who supported Prop 8,” Vigil said. “…We live in a media age, and we would prefer to see the trial.”

Vigil also said, however, that he believes the Supreme Court was attempting to avoid the “media circus” that accompanies high-profile cases.