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Gay marriage foes threaten to recall California Supreme Court justices

November 19, 2008 | 11:45 pm

Last week, the aggressive tactics of Prop. 8 opponents -- street protests, boycotts of business -- made headlines. This week, it appears that backers of the ban on gay marriage are the ones making threats. Yes on 8 forces are talking about a recall against members of the California Supreme Court if they throw out the measure.

To some, the recall talk marks another increase in the post-election battle and a response to the No on 8 protests:

"This push-back in the last two weeks has actually mobilized the Yes on 8 people," said the Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference. If the California Supreme Court were to overturn Proposition 8, "you will see a mobilized group like you have never seen in the state of California." Rodriguez said in an interview Tuesday that some religious leaders are discussing a potential recall of Supreme Court justices. He expects the Supreme Court to overturn Proposition 8, and if that happens, "there are grounds for a recall. We saw that with Gray Davis," he said. "We have an oligarchy, an oligarchy in judges' role in the state of California."

Remember the Gray Davis recall? Well, one of the figures behind it thinks a Prop. 8 recall effort if the justices toss the measure out is a real possibility. According to the San Diego Union-Tribune:

If that happens, watch out for a "barn-burner of an election -- the biggest thing this state has ever seen," says recall election guru Ted Costa. Costa says he's already been contacted by some of the folks who would seek to recall Ronald George, Joyce Kennard, Kathryn Werdegar and Carlos Moreno if Prop. 8 is scrapped. He thinks it's premature and risky because talk of a recall "would just (bleep) off the judges." Costa also doesn't sound like he's too thrilled about such a recall, saying it wouldn't be "healthy." Citing all the financial turmoil in California, he said, "If someone's going to do some recalling, that should be the focus."

When it comes to judicial recalls, one woman's name says it all. And Jon Fleischman utters it: "No government official is immune from the voters’ will, whether they be in the executive, legislative or, yes, even in the judicial branch. Remember Rose Bird?"

-- Shelby Grad

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