Inquiring minds are wondering what is wrong with California? A malaise has swept the state. How else can anyone explain what is going on economically, politically, or any other category of issues?
The (formerly) Golden State is about to return to the Governor’s office the biggest joke of the 70’s…Governor Moonbeam himself, Jerry Brown. The man who doesn’t meet the minimum perequisites of the Office of the Attorney General. He was not a member of the state bar for the last 5 years and should not have been able to run. But Democrats are not held to as high, er…not held to any standards in this state. This is the man who placed three judges on the state supreme court. And they all three tied for being the first to ever be recalled. This state is 160 years old and the only three judges recalled were the only ones that Jerry Brown placed. Remember to recall a judge takes at least 67 percent of voters.
Bird was the first Chief Justice to be removed from that office by a majority of the state’s voters. California justices are selected by the governor but must be regularly reconfirmed by the electorate; prior to Bird, no California appellate judge had ever failed such a vote.
She was removed in the November 4, 1986 election by a margin of 67 to 33 percent after a high-profile campaign that cited her categorical opposition to the death penalty. She reviewed a total of 64 capital cases appealed to the court. In each instance she issued a decision overturning the death penalty that had been imposed at trial. She was joined in her decision to overturn by at least three other members of the court in 61 of those cases. This led Bird’s critics to claim that she was substituting her own opinions and ideas for the laws and precedents upon which judicial decisions are supposed to be made. In addition, the Bird court struck down California’s “use a gun, go to jail” law that made a prison term mandatory for any crime in which the use of a gun was involved. The anti-Bird campaign ran television commercials featuring the children of the victims of the murderers whose sentences Bird and her fellow justices Cruz Reynoso and Joseph Grodin had voted to reverse. In addition to Bird, Reynoso and Grodin were also voted off the seven justice California state supreme court bench. Justice Stanley Mosk, who often joined Bird, Reynoso, and Grodin, was not challenged nor were the other three justices.
12 years later, Mosk explained why he was able to stay and Bird was not:
Rose Bird was pilloried because she generally voted to find some defect in death penalty convictions and to reverse them. I probably don’t like the death penalty any more than she does. As a matter of fact, I think the death penalty is wrong, that a person has no right to kill, and the state has no right to kill. But the difference is that I took an oath to support the law as it is and not as I might prefer it to be, and therefore, I’ve written my share of opinions upholding capital judgments.
But it is not just politically. Even technically the state isn’t where it historically has been. The top, edgy, cutting, techy stuff isn’t coming out of California.
The state needs to regain its mojo. But to do that it needs to change up its actions. Change its direction.
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