Friday, August 6, 2010

Friday Must Read: Will Gay Marriage Be Legal Immediately?; Whitman Refuses to Join Gates and Buffett

By Robert Gammon
Fri, Aug 6, 2010 at 10:16 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. Federal Judge Vaughn Walker could decide as early as today whether to allow gay and lesbian couples to begin marrying immediately. The Chron reports that the judge has issued a Friday deadline for arguments on whether his ruling earlier this week overturning Proposition 8, the ant-gay-marriage measure, should take affect right away or be stayed pending an appeal. If Walker rules that his order must go into effect immediately, then California government officials must begin issuing marriage licenses to gays and lesbians right away — unless an appellate court issues an emergency stay.

2. Billionaire gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman is refusing to join Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and dozens of the richest people in the world in their pledge to donate half of their wealth to charity, the AP reports. Buffet and Gates have been calling other billionaires to sign on to the pledge.

3. Whitman, meanwhile, is also alienating California Republicans as she continues to criticize her GOP primary opponent Steve Poizner. The Chron reports that Whitman’s constant attacks on Poizner — two months after the primary season ended — is harming her chances of getting his supporters to vote for her this November.

4. As expected, SunCal has sued the City of Alameda for breach of contract in the wake of the city council’s decision to end its relationship with the proposed developer of the former Naval Air Station. The Trib reports that SunCal wants a court to force the city to continue to negotiate with the company over its proposed massive housing project at Alameda Point.

5. The town of Fairfax in Marin County has ordered a six-month ban on PG&E SmartMeters in part because of health concerns related to electromagnetic fields, the Chron reports. As the Express recently reported, there is a growing concern that the SmartMeters “pulse” much more often and far more intensely than PG&E contends and thus could cause health problems.

6. Northern California is about to get its first female US attorney in nearly a century. The Chron reports that the US Senate confirmed Melinda Haag to be the new US attorney representing the Bay Area and much of Northern California. Haag, a former federal prosecutor, will replace Joseph Russoniello. The last woman US attorney for the region was Annette Adams, who served from 1918 to 1920.

7. And don’t forget that the Express’ free annual bash — the Best of the East Bay Party — will be in Jack London Square tonight. See you there!

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