Richard Socarides, an adviser in the Clinton White House and attorney and commentator on LGBT issues, was surprised that the high court too the Prop 8 case and thinks that the Supreme Court could very well deliver an major decision.
He writes, “Under Chief Justice John Roberts, the Court has often tried to avoid cases and
decisions with these kinds of broad impacts, and in this instance, there were
procedural grounds that presented the Court with easy outs, should the Justices
have wanted to take them. Had they done so, and let the latest decision
regarding the suit stand, they would have made same-sex marriage legal in
California, but nowhere else—and, considering that it is already permitted in
nine states and the District of Columbia, this might not have been such an
unacceptable outcome even for the staunchest of gay marriage’s opponents.
Instead, there seems to be support for a decision on the merits of the big issue
of the day.”