California Supreme Court Justices, from top left, Kathryn Mickle Werdegar, Carlos R. Moreno, Joyce L. Kennard, Marvin Baxter and from lower left, Ming Chin, Chief Justice Ronald M. George and Carol Corrigan
The votes by which the people of California passed Proposition 8, restricting the definition of marriage to a union between a man and a woman, had barely been counted when the ACLU filed a lawsuit. That suit, filed directly with the California Supreme Court, claimed that Prop. 8 would change the California Constitution in so fundamental a way — i.e., taking important rights away from a minority group — that it amounts to a constitutional revision. As such, the theory goes, the legislature was required to pass it before submitting the matter to the voters.
This kind of argument seems like meat and drink for California’s liberal Supreme Court. But my friend Craig Harrison tells me that if that court once again tells the voters “to go to hell,” he expects recall petitions to be circulated for the judges in question. This is permitted under the California Constitution if signatures can be obtained from 20% of the number of people who voted in the last election. Given the 2008 turnout, it might make sense to submit the petition following the primaries that will occur next year.
The petition would not just pertain to the merits of Prop 8, but also to the fact that the state’s judges will have thumbed their noses at the popular will. Perhaps those judges will consider this risk when they take up the matter.
Paul and John don’t quite have the timing correct as ANY election would be in June 2010 and there are no primary elections scheduled next year in California.
However, Flap does not think the California Supreme Court will throw out the California voters’ wishes. We received an indication of this the other day by Justice Kennard’s actions.
There is no sense in talking about a recall election of the court unless they go off the deep end again.
But, recalled all they would be in 2010.
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