Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Packing the California Courts.

At California Progress Report, Dan Aiello reports on the new push to add religious judges to local courts in California:

In what has been described as an attempt by right wing religious conservatives to "pack the courts" with judges who will oppose Separation of Church and State and "uphold traditional moral beliefs," an organization created by former Prop 8 activists is working to shift the San Diego Superior Court further to the right with a slate judicial conservative candidates to challenge four moderate incumbents of San Diego County's Superior Court in the June primary.

The candidates of the organization, Better Courts Now, were vetted on issues of Separation of Church and State, abortion, same-sex marriage and "traditional moral values," according to the group's web site and BCN leaders. In what has become the all-too-familiar alliance between religious fundamentalists and pro-business interests, Better Courts Now candidates also pledged their opposition to "end frivolous lawsuits against California businesses."

Challenging incumbent judges, most of whom are appointed by California's governors, is rare, but there have been challenges to the independence of the judicial branch by conservatives before, according to Jennifer Pizer, chief counsel for Lambda Legal, a national organization focused on the attainment of equal rights for gays and lesbians.

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