Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin Speaks Out On Gay Marriage

One of the nice things about living in Madison is that we have  Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin to call our own .   There are many other places in the nation who yearn for a liberal Democratic member of Congress with the courage to speak clearly about the issues.  As an openly gay person Baldwin speaks candidly about the matters of interest to an ever more restless and energized segment of the nation, and also her constituency.  Gay America listens when she speaks.

When asked if she would get married, Baldwin said, “I believe so, but, much more important is wanting that right. I yearn for a true equality.”

Baldwin would have to drive to Iowa as it’s the closest state with marriage rights.

California appears on the road back to marriage rights, though.

“I certainly have been encouraged by Judge Vaughn Walker’s very strong ruling, finding Prop 8 unconstitutional,” Baldwin said. “It’s heartening to see the decision that Prop 8 is unconstitutional, but also heartening to see the gradual, but steady, opinion change that is leading to greater and greater support for marriage equality for gay and lesbian Americans. And we can all be a part of that education. Getting into why marriage equality is most important is what is most persuasive to the American people, not arguing around the edges of this.

“I was certainly disappointed that the stay on the ruling of the judge was not lifted. But, hand in hand with that came a commitment to review the case on a quicker pace, which I think is encouraging. I think that, the more people who are married, the easier time we will have of changing hearts and minds. If you see a same-sex married couple living in your neighborhood, shopping at the same grocery store, worshipping in the same church, all of those things change hearts and minds. So, the disappointment for me is that people who very much want equal protection under the law are denied it for an additional length of time.

“I think we certainly will win marriage equality rights. [ It’s ] just a matter of time.”

In 2006, Wisconsin had a constitutional amendment on the ballot, and the majority voted to define marriage as a relationship between a man and a woman, and to ban any substantially similar institution from legal recognition.

Our country has always marched towards equality, just not necessarily at the pace that those who are denied full equality would be satisfied with, but it’s always been the direction that we’re headed,” Baldwin said.

“Obviously we have a number of states that are recognizing same-sex marriage at the state level. We have an active challenge [ in Massachusetts ] to the Defensive of Marriage Act at the federal level that is denying those married couples the federal benefits of marriage. We are seeing the case in California, in all likelihood, working its way up to the U.S. Supreme Court.”

Best Sentence From Judge Walker Prop 8 Decision, Idea I Have Long Argued

There was one line that popped out and made me especially clap my hands and yell out “Yes!” as I read the decision of Judge Walker where he ruled that the gay-marriage ban was unconstitutional in California.  

One line that echoed in the decision is what I have stated over and over again on this blog, and in rousing discussions with friends in our living room.  

From page 116 of this historic decision.   

That the majority of California voters supported Proposition 8 is irrelevant, as “fundamental rights may not be submitted to [a] vote; they depend on the outcome of no elections.” 
I agree!! 
The reason I find his line so essential is that I have thought for many years, decades in fact, that the courts would be the final decision-makers on this matter as it all weighed so heavily on constitutional issues.  While politicians have used gay marriage in the ‘culture wars’ so to gain power, it is the gay men and women around the nation who have suffered.  Therefore, I have always held that the constitutional nature of gay marriage made it more appropriate to be settled by judges.  Most voters have no knowledge of the 14th Amendment, for Pete’s sake.  Why then should they have any right to vote on a gay person’s happiness?
No one should have to try to persuade bubba why civil rights should apply to everyone.   Why should  a gay person’s rights be placed on a public referendum for the average joe to consider at the same time he is watching  “The Simpsons”?   The answer for most is obvious without saying.   Today a federal judge wrote the words to clarify the matter.  Thank You Judge Walker!
 No other group has ever had their civil rights placed before the voters in a referendum.  But the right-wing think they have license to practice bigotry openly against gay people.  I have argued often on this blog about how ridiculous and demeaning it is to have to convince enough average voters to do the right thing regarding equality and civil rights.  No one else had to do it this way.  If the inter-racial marriage matter had been up for a vote in each state can any one of my readers tell me how that might have fared?   The only thing left to do is fight like hell, and not let the conservatives have an inch.   I know the tide of history is on my side, and the conservative do to, but until there is an all-out victory these types of battles will be waged, and we must react with all the vigor and determination we can mount.   

Video: “8 – The Mormon Proposition”, LDS, And Anti-Gay Teachings

This is one highly touted documentary film that will make many sit up and pay attention. 

The Mormons made a choice.  As usual it was the wrong choice.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints plays a starring role in a new Sundance Film Festival documentary about the 2008 ballot initiative that successfully banned gay marriage in California.

Miami-area filmmaker Reed Cowan’s “8: The Mormon Proposition,” premieres Sunday at the Park City festival.

The film contends the LDS Church built on decades of anti-gay teachings to justify its political activism and tried to hide its role as the driving force behind the coalition of conservatives that helped pass Proposition 8. The proposition reversed an earlier court ruling legalizing gay marriage.


Ted Olson Provides Conservative Reasoning For Gay Marriage In America

Here is another example of where common ground can be found between polar opposites.

Ted Olson, a very unlikely ally on any issue that most liberals care about, has taken up the cause of gay marriage in America.  He is a most unusual advocate for this matter, which makes his work and effort all the more worth reading.  After all he is a rock-ribbed conservative who thinks that it is not illogical to think Jack and Sam should be able to wed, or Jenny and Sharon to be united in marriage.  Together with David Boies, Olson is attempting to persuade a federal court to invalidate California’s Proposition 8—the voter-approved measure that overturned California’s constitutional right to marry a person of the same sex. 

Many of my fellow conservatives have an almost knee-jerk hostility toward gay marriage. This does not make sense, because same-sex unions promote the values conservatives prize. Marriage is one of the basic building blocks of our neighborhoods and our nation. At its best, it is a stable bond between two individuals who work to create a loving household and a social and economic partnership. We encourage couples to marry because the commitments they make to one another provide benefits not only to themselves but also to their families and communities. Marriage requires thinking beyond one’s own needs. It transforms two individuals into a union based on shared aspirations, and in doing so establishes a formal investment in the well-being of society. The fact that individuals who happen to be gay want to share in this vital social institution is evidence that conservative ideals enjoy widespread acceptance. Conservatives should celebrate this, rather than lament it. 

Legalizing same-sex marriage would also be a recognition of basic American principles, and would represent the culmination of our nation’s commitment to equal rights. It is, some have said, the last major civil-rights milestone yet to be surpassed in our two-century struggle to attain the goals we set for this nation at its formation.

This bedrock American principle of equality is central to the political and legal convictions of Republicans, Democrats, liberals, and conservatives alike. The dream that became America began with the revolutionary concept expressed in the Declaration of Independence in words that are among the most noble and elegant ever written: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Sadly, our nation has taken a long time to live up to the promise of equality. In 1857, the Supreme Court held that an African-American could not be a citizen. During the ensuing Civil War, Abraham Lincoln eloquently reminded the nation of its found-ing principle: “our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.”

At the end of the Civil War, to make the elusive promise of equality a reality, the 14th Amendment to the Constitution added the command that “no State É shall deprive any person of life, liberty or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person É the equal protection of the laws.”

Subsequent laws and court decisions have made clear that equality under the law extends to persons of all races, religions, and places of origin. What better way to make this national aspiration complete than to apply the same protection to men and women who differ from others only on the basis of their sexual orientation? I cannot think of a single reason—and have not heard one since I undertook this venture—for continued discrimination against decent, hardworking members of our society on that basis.

No Statewide Official In California Will Defend Prop 8 In Federal Court

How does one even try and defend the indefensible anyway?

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has declined to defend the constitutionality of Proposition 8, telling a San Francisco judge that the legality of the anti-gay marriage measure is for the courts to decide.

The governor’s decision to remain neutral in a federal challenge to Proposition 8 means no statewide official will be defending the measure in federal court.

Proposition 8 resurrected a ban on same-sex marriage, receiving 52% of the vote in the November election. The California Supreme Court ruled 6-1 last month that the measure did not violate the state constitution.

Supporters of the measure said Wednesday they were disappointed but not surprised by the governor’s stance.

Ironic Placement Of Ad

It does catch the eyes for irony.

On the top of page 3 of the Wall Street Journal today is the headline “California Gay-Union Ban Upheld”, which is followed by a story on  the Supreme Court decision handed down on Tuesday.

Next to the story, on the upper right hand corner, is an advertisement for Tiffany & Company.

“Tiffany has over 40 styles of wedding bands in platinum and eighteen karat gold.  Select carefully the ring that you’ll wear for the rest of your life.”


Little Noticed Story From California……Could Be Huge News For Prop 8

After reading tons of stuff tonight regarding the news from California,  I think we need to consider the following……Prop 8 litigation is just starting. 

Two prominent attorneys who argued on opposite sides of Bush vs. Gore, the legal battle over the 2000 presidential election, announced Tuesday that they will challenge Proposition 8 in federal court and seek to restore gay marriage until the case is decided.

Former U.S. Solicitor General Theodore B. Olsonand David Boies, who represented then-Vice President Al Gore in the contested election, have joined forces to tackle the same-sex marriage issue, which has deeply divided Californians and left 18,000 gay couples married last year in legal isolation.

In a project of the American Foundation for Equal Rights, Olson and Boies have united to represent two same-sex couples filing suit after being denied marriage licenses because of Proposition 8.

Their suit, to be filed in U.S. District Court in California, calls for an injunction against the proposition, allowing immediate reinstatement of marriage rights for same-sex couples.

The California Supreme Court ruled in May 2008 that state law prohibiting same-sex marriage was unconstitutional under the privacy, due process and equal protection guarantees of the California Constitution.

But in November, voters passed Proposition 8, which amended the state Constitution to restrict marriage to between a man and a woman. The high court upheld the voter initiative in a 6-1 ruling today, with  Justice Carlos Moreno dissenting.

Legal scholars have observed that proponents of gay marriage have avoided taking the issue to federal court so far because of the dominance of conservative judges and justices on the federal bench after the eight-year tenure of President George W. Bush.

The U.S. Supreme Court has what usually results in a 5-4 majority against extending rights to gays by recognizing sexual orientation as a vulnerable class of citizens in need of protection.

And all but one of the 13 federal appeals circuits has a reliable conservative majority. Even the exception, the San Francisco-based U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, experienced a curtailing of its liberal orientation with Bush’s seven appointments.

Read The Prop 8 California Supreme Court Ruling Here

 Read The Prop 8 California Supreme Court Ruling Here

J. Moreno makes some powerful statements in his dissent.  ( I have posted much of his writing below.) I know the entire ruling is long, but I suggest some reading time be set aside, as will be done here, to better understand the ruling.  There are future battles to be waged on this matter in California.

For reasons elaborated below, I conclude that requiring discrimination against a minority group on the basis of a suspect classification strikes at the core of the promise of equality that underlies our California Constitution and thus “represents such a drastic and far-reaching change in the nature and operation of our governmental structure that it must be considered a ‘revision’ of the state Constitution rather than a mere ‘amendment’ thereof.”  (Amador Valley Joint Union High Sch. Dist. v. State Bd. of Equalization (1978) 22 Cal.3d 208, 221 (Amador Valley).)  The rule the majority crafts today not only allows same-sex couples to be stripped of the right to marry that this court recognized in the Marriage Cases, it places at risk the state constitutional rights of all disfavored minorities.  It weakens the status of our state Constitution as a bulwark of fundamental rights for minorities protected from the will of the majority.  I therefore dissent.[1]

Equal protection principles lie at the core of the California Constitution and have been embodied in that document from its inception.  (Grodin et al., The California State Constitution: A Reference Guide (1993) p. 47.)  Former section 11 of article I of the original 1849 Constitution stated, “All laws of a general nature shall have a uniform operation” and section 21 of article I of the 1879 Constitution added, “nor shall any citizen, or class of citizens, be granted privileges or immunities which, upon the same terms, shall not be granted to all citizens.”  These provisions were “substantially the equivalent of the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.”  (Department of Mental Hygiene v. Kirchner (1965) 62 Cal.2d 586, 588; see Sail’er Inn, Inc. v. Kirby (1971) 5 Cal.3d 1, 15, fn. 13.)  In 1974, an express equal protection clause was added to the California Constitution that mirrors the language of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.[2]

Ensuring equal protection prevents “governmental decisionmakers from treating differently persons who are in all relevant respects alike. [Citation.]”  (Nordlinger v. Hahn (1992) 505 U.S. 1, 10.)  The doctrine’s purpose is to protect “against intentional and arbitrary discrimination.”  (Sunday Lake Iron Co. v. Wakefield (1918) 247 U.S. 350, 352.)  As such, it is a shield against arbitrary government power, because equal protection “requires the democratic majority to accept for themselves and their loved ones what they impose on you and me.”  (Cruzan v. Director of Missouri Dep’t of Health (1990) 497 U.S. 261, 300 (conc. opn. of Scalia, J.).)  Thus, it is not so much a discrete constitutional right as it is a basic constitutional principle that guides all legislation and compels the will of the majority to be tempered by justice.  The Iowa Supreme Court, in affirming the constitutional right of gays and lesbians to marry, recently recognized the importance of this promise of equality, stating: “If gay and lesbian people must submit to different treatment without an exceedingly persuasive justification, they are deprived of the benefits of the principle of equal protection upon which the rule of law is founded.”  (Varnum v. Brien, supra, 763 N.W.2d 862, 905, italics added.)

Of particular importance for this case is that discrimination against disfavored minorities is presumptively suspect under the equal protection clause.  As we affirmed in the Marriage Cases, supra, 43 Cal.4th at page 842, and as the majority reaffirms today (maj. opn., ante, at p. 42), sexual orientation is such a suspect classification.  Under our state equal protection jurisprudence, as in federal law, laws that involve suspect classifications or touch upon fundamental interests are subject to strict scrutiny, meaning that “ ‘ “ ‘ “the state bears the burden of establishing not only that it has a compelling interest which justifies the law but that the distinctions drawn by the law are necessary to further its purpose.”  [Citation.]’ ” ’ ”  (Marriage Cases, supra, 43 Cal.4th at p. 832, italics omitted.)

The equal protection clause is therefore, by its nature, inherently countermajoritarian.  As a logical matter, it cannot depend on the will of the majority for its enforcement, for it is the will of the majority against which the equal protection clause is designed to protect.  Rather, the enforcement of the equal protection clause is especially dependent on “the power of the courts to test legislative and executive acts by the light of constitutional mandate and in particular to preserve constitutional rights, whether of individual or minority, from obliteration by the majority.”  (Bixby v. Pierno (1971) 4 Cal.3d 130, 141.)

California’s equal protection doctrine has not been confined to that of federal Fourteenth Amendment jurisprudence: “[O]ur state equal protection provisions . . . are possessed of an independent vitality which, in a given case, may demand an analysis different from that which would obtain if only the federal standard were applicable.”  (Serrano v. Priest (1976) 18 Cal.3d 728, 764.)  The equal protection clause of our state Constitution is important as a provision of independent force and effect only when this court extends greater protection under that provision than the high court has extended under the equal protection clause of the federal Constitution.

The majority upholds Proposition 8 by reasoning that it does not “fundamentally alter the meaning and substance of state constitutional equal protection principles as articulated” in the Marriage Cases, because it merely “carves out a narrow and limited exception to these state constitutional rights, reserving the official designation of the term ‘marriage’ for the union of opposite-sex couples . . . .”  (Maj. opn., ante, at p. 7.)  The majority protests that it does not mean to “diminish or minimize the significance that the official designation of ‘marriage’ holds” (ibid.), but that is exactly the effect of its decision.

Denying the designation of marriage to same-sex couples cannot fairly be described as a “narrow” or “limited” exception to the requirement of equal protection; the passionate public debate over whether same-sex couples should be allowed to marry, even in a state that offers largely equivalent substantive rights through the alternative of domestic partnership, belies such a description.  “[T]he constitutional right to marry . . . has been recognized as one of the basic, inalienable civil rights guaranteed to an individual by the California Constitution . . . .”  (Marriage Cases, supra, 43 Cal.4th at p. 781.)  Prior to the enactment of Proposition 8, the California Constitution guaranteed “this basic civil right to all Californians, whether gay or heterosexual, and to same-sex couples as well as to opposite-sex couples.”  (43 Cal.4th at p. 782.)  “In light of the fundamental nature of the substantive rights embodied in the right to marry — and their central importance to an individual’s opportunity to live a happy, meaningful, and satisfying life as a full member of society — the California Constitution properly must be interpreted to guarantee this basic civil right to all individuals and couples, without regard to their sexual orientation.”  (Id. at p. 820, fn. omitted.)

We recognized in the Marriage Cases that “draw[ing] a distinction between the name for the official family relationship of opposite-sex couples (marriage) and that for same-sex couples (domestic partnership)” (Marriage Cases, supra, 43 Cal.4th at p. 782) “impinges upon a same-sex couple’s fundamental interest in having their family relationship accorded the same respect and dignity enjoyed by an opposite-sex couple.”  (Id. at p. 784.)  Denying same-sex couples the right to call their relationships marriages treats them as “ ‘second-class citizens.’ ”  (Id. at p. 785.)  As we observed in the Marriage Cases, “there exists a substantial risk that a judicial decision upholding the differential treatment of opposite-sex and same-sex couples would be understood as validating a more general proposition that our state by now has repudiated: that it is permissible, under the law, for society to treat gay individuals and same-sex couples differently from, and less favorably than, heterosexual individuals and opposite-sex couples.”  (43 Cal.4th at p. 855.)

Describing the effect of Proposition 8 as narrow and limited fails to acknowledge the significance of the discrimination it requires.  But even a narrow and limited exception to the promise of full equality strikes at the core of, and thus fundamentally alters, the guarantee of equal treatment that has pervaded the California Constitution since 1849.  Promising equal treatment to some is fundamentally different from promising equal treatment to all.  Promising treatment that is almost equal is fundamentally different from ensuring truly equal treatment.  Granting a disfavored minority only some of the rights enjoyed by the majority is fundamentally different from recognizing, as a constitutional imperative, that they must be granted all of those rights.  Granting same-sex couples all of the rights enjoyed by opposite-sex couples, except the right to call their “ ‘officially recognized, and protected family relationship’ ” (maj. opn., ante, at p. 7) a marriage, still denies them equal treatment.

There is no doubt that the ultimate authority over the content of the California Constitution lies with the people.  “All political power is inherent in the people.  Government is instituted for their protection, security, and benefit, and they have the right to alter or reform it when the public good may require.”  (Cal. Const., art. II, § 1.)  But there are two methods for the people to alter the California Constitution:  by revising it or by amending it.  A revision to the Constitution must be initiated by the Legislature in one of two ways:  the Legislature, by a two-thirds vote, “may submit at a general election the question whether to call a convention to revise the Constitution” (Cal. Const., art. XVIII, § 2), or the Legislature, by a two-thirds vote, may propose a revision of the Constitution to be submitted to the voters (Cal. Const., art. XVIII, § 1).  This is in contrast to a constitutional amendment, which can be accomplished by a majority of the electorate after the signatures of 8 percent of the number of persons who voted in the last gubernatorial election have qualified it for the ballot.  (Cal. Const., art. II, § 8, subd. (b).)

We have long recognized the importance of this distinction between revising and amending the Constitution.  In Livermore v. Waite (1894) 102 Cal. 113, which was decided before the initiative process was created in 1911, we observed that, at that time, there were “two methods by which changes may be effected in [the California Constitution], one by a convention of delegates chosen by the people for the express purpose of revising the entire instrument, and the other through the adoption by the people of propositions for specific amendments that have been previously submitted to it by two-thirds of the members of each branch of the legislature.” (Id. at p. 117.)  We noted that there was a basic difference between the process of revising the Constitution by means of the constitutional convention and amending the Constitution.  “Under the first of these methods [revision] the entire sovereignty of the people is represented in the convention.  The character and extent of a constitution that may be framed by that body is freed from any limitations other than those contained in the constitution of the United States.”  (Ibid.)  The power of amendment, however, was much more limited:  “The power of the legislature to initiate any change in the existing organic law is, however, of greatly less extent, and, being a delegated power, is to be strictly construed under the limitations by which it has been conferred. . . .  The legislature is not authorized to assume the function of a constitutional convention, and propose for adoption by the people a revision of the entire constitution under the form of an amendment . . . .”  (Id. at pp. 117-118.)

We took care in Livermore to explain the reason for this difference between the broad power of revision and the greatly limited power of amendment:  “The very term ‘constitution’ implies an instrument of a permanent and abiding nature, and the provisions contained therein for its revision indicate the will of the people that the underlying principles upon which it rests, as well as the substantial entirety of the instrument, shall be of a like permanent and abiding nature.  On the other hand, the significance of the term ‘amendment’ implies such an addition or change within the lines of the original instrument as will effect an improvement, or better carry out the purpose for which it was framed.”  (Livermore v. Waite, supra, 102 Cal. at pp. 118-119.) [3]

The emergence of the initiative process did nothing to alter the distinction between amending and revising the Constitution.  The initiative process was created in 1911 to permit the people to directly enact statutes and amend, but not revise, the Constitution.  As has been well documented and often recounted, the introduction of direct democracy in California in the form of the initiative, referendum, and recall process, was in response to government corruption prevalent at the beginning of the last century.  (See Cal. Com. on Campaign Financing, Democracy by Initiative: Shaping California’s Fourth Branch of Government (1992) pp. 36-40.)  Corporate power, principally that of the Southern Pacific Railroad, dominated state government and had undermined both the independence of the judiciary and the Legislature’s role as a servant of the popular will.  (Id. at pp. 36-38.)  Also of concern were corrupt political bosses and big-city machines.  (Id. at pp. 39-40.)  Hiram Johnson and his allies in the Progressive movement sought to restore the connection between government and the majority will by allowing the people to bypass an unresponsive Legislature and enact their own legislation.  (Id. at pp. 40-42.)

            Although this initiative process was thereby instituted as a remedy for government corruption, and to free legislation from the influence of powerful special interests and the Legislature’s own self-serving inertia, there is no indication that this process was intended to prevent courts from performing their traditional constitutional function of protecting persecuted minorities from the majority will.  There is a fundamental difference between preventing politically powerful minorities from unduly influencing legislative and judicial decisions on the one hand, and preventing courts from protecting the rights of disfavored minorities unable to obtain equal rights through the usual majoritarian processes on the other.  There is no indication that the Progressives who framed the initiative process were insensible to that distinction, or that they sought to abolish the judiciary’s role as the guardian of minorities’ fundamental rights.

[1]          I agree with part VI of the majority opinion that Proposition 8 does not invalidate same-sex marriages entered into before its passage.  (See maj. opn., ante, at p. 13.)  I also agree with the majority opinion that Proposition 8 does not entirely repeal or abrogate a same-sex couple’s substantive state constitutional right to marry as set forth in the Marriage Cases, but rather carves out an exception by “reserving the official designation of the term ‘marriage’ for the union of opposite-sex couples.”  (Maj. opn., ante, at p. 7.)

[2]          The equal protection clause was added to the California Constitution, article I, section 7, upon the recommendation of the California Constitution Revision Commission, as part of 1974’s Proposition 7, a ballot measure proposed by two-thirds of both the Senate and the Assembly, which, according to the Legislative Counsel’s Digest, “[r]evises, renumbers and specifically provides for various constitutional rights of persons.”  (Legis. Counsel’s Dig., Assem. Const. Amend. No. 60 (1973-1974 Reg. Sess.) 2 Stats. 1974, Summary Dig., p. 275.)

[3]          The majority contends that “when the entire pertinent passage of the Livermore decision is considered, it appears reasonable to conclude that the court in Livermore itself would have recognized that a measure such as Proposition 8 constitutes a constitutional amendment, because in describing the type of measures that would constitute an amendment, the court in that case noted that ‘some popular wave of sociological reform, like the abolition of the death penalty for crime, or a prohibition against the manufacture or sale of intoxicating liquors, may induce a legislature to submit for enactment, in the permanent form of a constitutional prohibition, a rule which it has the power itself to enact as a law, but which [as such] might be of only temporary effect.’  [Citation.]  In adding to the California Constitution a provision declaring that marriage shall refer only to a union between a man and a woman, Proposition 8 would appear to constitute just the type of discrete ‘popular’ and ‘sociological’ amendment that the Livermore decision had in mind.”  (Maj. opn., ante, at pp. 104-105, fn. omitted.)  Yet it is clear from reading the “entire” passage, that the majority’s interpretation is dubious, because Livermore speaks in terms of enacting in “permanent form” “a rule which [the Legislature] has the power itself to enact as a law, but which [as such] might be of only temporary effect.”  (Livermore v. Waite, supra, 102 Cal. at p. 119.)  What is at issue in this case is an alteration in the Constitution that the Legislature would have no power to enact, and is therefore fundamentally distinguishable from the type of amendment contemplated by Livermore in the above passage.