Wednesday, July 28, 2010

California Supreme Court Could Go to a Female Majority

Last Wednesday, Governor Schwarzenegger nominated Tani Cantil-Sakauye to the position of Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court.

This is great news for women in politics. If Sakauye is confirmed, not only will it be another victory in the sense that there is another woman on the California Supreme Court, but her confirmation would also push the court to a female majority of four to three for the first time in history. (Sakauye would join the three current female associate justices: Joyce L. Kennard, Carol A. Corrigan, and Kathryn M. Werdeger.)

Furthermore, Sakauye, a Filipina-American, would also be the second female and the first person of color in the Chief Justice position.

Governor Schwarzenegger's nomination comes as a response to current Chief Justice Ronald George's announcement that he will not seek another term. George's departure will be a loss to the LGBTQ community, as George authored the legislation that legalized same-sex marriages in 2008 (although later reversed by Proposition 8).

Still, we hope that if appointed, Sakauye will support feminist issues, and help create a fantastic record of feminist rulings for the first-ever, California Supreme Court with a female majority.

The Commission on Judicial Appointments will review Sakauye's nomination on August 25th. If approved, she'll need to be voted into office by California voters on November 2nd.

(photo credit to