I went down to the Supreme Court around 10 p.m. last night and talked to a few of the 60-some people who were camped out to get into today’s gay marriage ruling. It was humid and thunderstormed later in the night, though the conditions weren’t as extreme as for those who camped outside the court in the snow for four days in March. There were rumors of “Hollywood types” paying people thousands of dollars to sit in line for them, but the crowd was predominantly law students or undergrads—one group of interns ordered a pizza with the delivery address “outside of the Supreme Court.” (Apologies in advance for shoddy iPhone photography.)
Nicole Russo, 21, a legal intern at DuBoff & Associates, was at the end of the line. She’d spent the last night camped out in line too, and was running on one and a half hours sleep. Russo was the only person I talked to in line who strongly believed Prop 8 should be struck down but that the court shouldn’t establish a federal gay marriage mandate “by any means.”
Laura Muth, 22, a recent Johns Hopkins grad, and Christina Warner, 23, a Treasury Department intern, decided to camp out after Warner walked past the court after work and asked a security guard about The Line. When asked what Wednesday’s ruling would mean for them, Muth gestured to Warner and said, “Well, we’re dating, so … ” before erupting into laughter. Warner talked about SCOTUSblog’s coverage with the reverence of a Deadhead, and was excited to experience their “atmosphere of the courtroom” dispatches firsthand.
Daniel Rice, 24, and Kyle Druding, 22, are rising 2L’s at Duke who drove up from Durham to camp out. When asked what brought them there, Druding joked, “The Hobbs Act.” It was Rice’s fourth trip in four years to see SCOTUS at work—he even kept a play-by-play log when he watched the Affordable Care Act oral arguments in 2012. An excerpt: “Packed courtroom. Rough start for [Don] Verrilli. Sotomayor tried to speak a few times early. Alito’s burial hypo got lots of smiles. Kagan sips from coffee cup during long Alito question at 10:10. Lots of shifting in seats when Kennedy first spoke … Sotomayor wearing huge earrings.”