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The fast-moving dispute over broadcast access to the federal trial on California’s ban on same-sex marriage has triggered a dustup within the leadership of the federal judiciary.

Last Friday, on the eve of the San Francisco trial, top officials of the Judicial Conference of the United States sent a stern letter (pdf) to Chief Judge Alex Kozinski of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reminding him of Judicial Conference policy against televising trials. Kozinski wrote back on Sunday, warning that, if federal courts don’t experiment with access and technology, Congress will force the federal courts to act.

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