As you are aware, the Supreme Court had recently declared the violent videogame bill in California unconstitutional, and the Entertainment Software Association who fought against the law all the way to the Supreme Court racked up over one million dollars in legal fees. Because California lost, repeatedly, the ESA wants California to cough up for the bill.
The Supreme Court can defer the issue to a lower court if they wish, but the ESA has motioned in the past to have the states of the US reimburse them for legal fees. Three other states, Louisiana, Michigan, and Illinois had to fork over cash to the ESA in order to pay for their bills after their own laws were violently shot down, making their success very likely.
In the United States, the one who loses the case is generally obligated to cover the legal fees of the other party.
CEO of the ESA, Gallagher, said “From the start of this misguided legislation, then-Governor Schwarzenegger and specific California legislators knew that their efforts to censor and restrict expression were, as court after court ruled, unconstitutional and thus a waste of taxpayers’ money, government time, and state resources.”
It’s unlikely California will have any legs to stand on if they make an attempt to fight the fees, as such an act would provide plenty of people the ability to sue and get out of paying someone else’s legal fees, which is a very exploitable loophole when opened up.
California is already having some money issues. Combine this with the track record of videogame laws being struck off the books on the exact same grounds multiple times, there are going to be some very upset people in California once Taxpayers find they are going to be pulling over a million dollars out of the coffers because of a failed bill that has been rejected numerous times. I don’t keep up with politics much but I do know that this is going to leave deep wounds in the next elections.
If other legislators in this country are going to be smart, they will respect the first amendment and understand that videogames have the same protections as movies and books, and have had them since their inception.