Please click here for ratings on all judges on the California ballot for this November election.
The California government website only offers a bio, not a history of decisions. The bio provides the colleges the judges graduated from and which Governor appointed them. I suppose I could take a guess as to their politics from that, but I thought that was unfair, so I kept looking.
Eventually I came across an OC Register article that linked to this website. The journalist pointed out that the website approves of “strict constructionist” judges, and he does not. That’s fine. I was pretty sure I do support them but to make sure, I looked up the definition, found here, and as it turns out, I most certainly do.
This is how government is supposed to work (but does not right now)…the legislature (state or federal) creates laws based on what the people they represent (you and me) want. If you and I want to change a law, we do that through our elected representatives. The courts and their judges are only supposed to decide cases based on existing law and decisions made on previous court cases, called precedents. In this way, judges are simply enforcing the laws that the people have already decided on.
What they are NOT supposed to do, but they are doing, is decide cases based on their own personal opinions, which has become wildly popular at both the state and federal level. This is called, “judicial activism” which means judges are becoming politicians, and rather than look at the laws that we the people have approved, a judge will decide that he doesn’t agree with those laws, or the people who passed them, and vote in a direction that suits his own personal preference.
This is extremely dangerous because it removes from the people the ability to control what our laws are, and puts that control in the hands of judges-cum-activists.
You can see how fatally important this can be in the case of the federal Supreme Court where judges are appointed for life. An activist judge appointed to The Supreme Court can make rulings that directly impact our lives in very big ways based on their own personal opinion, no matter how much the people of the country disagree with them…and then their personal opinion becomes the supreme law of the land. Very scary. That is too much power for just a few people to have, which is why the Founding Fathers wanted strict constructionist judges, not activists.
This is also why it is so important to vote on judge appointments at the local and state levels. Over time, these judges move up the ladder and are eventually the pool that Supreme Court judges for both the state and federal levels are drawn from. Today’s lowly county activist judge can easily become tomorrow’s United States Supreme Court activist judge.
The website I posted here today supports strict constructionist judges.