How to Recall a California Supreme Court Justice

Information is power if power has already been granted to you. Indeed, in California great political authority has already been granted to its citizens. That power is our history and our legacy, for the California Constitution in Article 2 Section 1 reads:

“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.”

The voters of California have recently reformed their state by way of a ballot initiative called Proposition 8. This was a reformation because marriage in California (and in all the world) has always been between a man and a woman. Only in recent months did our justices deem it fit to alter our state laws and our constitution. Because the justices are sworn to uphold the constitution, not alter it, they should be recalled for the failure to discharge their duties. The people of California have also been granted this right. It is within our authority as states Article 2 Section 13: “Recall is the power of the electors to remove an elective officer,” and, as the constitutional framers saw fit and in California Supreme Court Justices are elected, not appointed; Article 2 Section 16a:

“Judges of the Supreme Court shall be elected at large and judges of courts of appeal shall be elected in their districts at general elections at the same time and places as the Governor. Their terms are 12 years beginning the Monday after January 1 following their election”

Because in California Supreme Court Justices are not appointed as they are under the federal constitution, but elected, they are subject to recall by the electorate, and rightly so.

The constitutional framers made the manner of recall very simple. The recall process has two parts. Both of these parts are stated plainly in Article 2 Section 14a. The first is:

“Recall of a state officer is initiated by delivering to the Secretary of State a petition alleging reason for recall. Sufficiency of reason is not reviewable.”

The petition to remove these elected officials is not “reviewable.” That means that the voters could say, “We the people of California petition for the removal of these four Supreme Court Justices because they are dumb dumb heads, and we don't like them any more.” Such a claim could not be rejected on legal grounds; however, such simplicity might not be considered overly persuasive either. Nonetheless, the point is that the California Constitution makes this matter simple because its intent is that the people of California, not its lawyers or its judges, define the nature and scope of our laws.

Those who choose to circulate a petition to recall each of these four judges might contemplate a petition that says:

“We the people of California, petition for the recall of Chief Justice Ronald M. George, Associate Justice Joyce L. Kennard, Associate Justice Kathryn M. Werdegar, and Associate Justice Carlos R. Moreno for the following reasons:

Unless one is of an unsound mind, seeks personal aggrandizement, or sets himself above the body of laws and the constitution he has taken an oath to uphold, the historic documents surrounding the constitution and the historic contexts of the documents surrounding the family law of California cannot be construed to include homosexuality as a suspect category in civil right laws: these are plainly limited to race, religion and gender.

The historic documents of California and the body of documentation surrounding California can not be held to imply or refer to a right for same sex couples to pretend to marriage by law, and any such conclusion is evidence of an unsound mind, self seeking, or a judicial hubris that pretends to be above the body of laws embodied in the constitution of California he swore to uphold.

In altering the Constitution of California and the body of laws it embodies, this jurist has undermined the civil right to marry for all couples; he has reduced marriage to a mere legal contract defined by states rather than upholding the court's legitimate responsibility to recognize the union of a man and a woman. This is an ancient contract between two people based on exalting that which nature and the God of nature has set within the heart of all people everywhere without regard to race, religion or gender. This fundamental joining, like the right to free speech, like the right to worship in accordance with our conscience, like the right to free movement and like the right to defend oneself against tyrants and any who would threaten life and property, exists prior to governments and any government that refuses to recognize such rights is illegitimate.

In altering the Constitution of California and the body of laws it embodies, these jurists have undermined civil society, civil conversation, and the peace of this great state, for we have had untold expenditures of time and money resulting only in increased acrimony and civil unrest. This is entirely the fault of this Court. Rather than undermining the documents and laws of this land designed for the express purpose of maintaining civil discourse, a democratic union and the peace of this people, this court could have urged the plaintiffs in “re Marriages” to utilize the ballot initiatives to democratically amend our State's Constitution. Instead, this court has purposely misrepresented the documents of our state and deceived many of its unwitting populace into feeling that it has “rights” it never received in accordance with the democratic principles of our society.

The ruling of this court expresses an explicit intent to order state representatives to deceive others by applying the historic name and honor of the institution of “marriage” on unions that have no history at all. This legislated fraud would have constituted a tyranny and would have affected young children of every race, religion and gender from the tender ages in which they enter our public school system.

Article 2 Section 14a also sets out the second condition for demanding the recall of its elected judges: “Proponents (of the recall) have 160 days to file signed petitions.” Article 2 Section 14b and c contains the instructions on filing the petition:

“A petition to recall a statewide officer must be signed by electors equal in number to 12 percent of the last vote for the office, with signatures from each of 5 counties equal in number to 1 percent of the last vote for the office in the county. Signatures to recall Senators, members of the Assembly, members of the Board of Equalization, and judges of courts of appeal and trial courts must equal in number 20 percent of the last vote for the office. (b) The Secretary of State shall maintain a continuous count of the signatures certified to that office.”

California is one of the most liberal states in These United States of America in the oldest and truest meaning of that word. California is not liberal because has relativism, high taxes, deficit spending and a “nanny government” written into its constitution. California is proudly one of the most liberal states in the Union because, rather than specifying that the authority and responsibility for governance resides primarily in the representatives of the people, it gives the authority and responsibility for governance to the people in some of the most direct and practical ways ever devised. Californians ought to prize the authority its citizens have been granted, but with this greater authority comes greater responsibility. Californians have a responsibility, a duty, to recall these judges. This matter has not been left to lawyers, other judges, or to elected representatives. They do not, therefore, have the responsibility to recall these judges. Californians, however, do. It is therefore, the people of California who are responsible for the harm these judges have done and will do if they do not act together swiftly and decisively to recall them.


Latest posts by Paul Benedict (see all)

Leave a Reply