Judicial Friction Story in Sacramento Bee

Dan Walters, who covers courts for the Sacramento Bee, has an interesting background story about continuing friction in the California judiciary. He offers a good history of the major players, writing that “… when Tani Cantil-Sakauye became California’s chief justice nearly three years ago, she inherited a nasty judicial squabble from her polarizing predecessor, Ron George.”
Walters reminds us that “… George had persuaded the Legislature to have the state assume financial and operational control of what had been a locally managed court system, thus making him the boss of an immense state agency [and] many local judges resented what they saw as George’s autocratic style of governance through a State Judicial Council and an Administrative Office of the Courts that he controlled, dubbing him “King George.”
But the reporter, who has the personal background to back his opinion, also says that “… resentments flared into open political warfare with the creation of the anti-George Alliance of California Judges, and the infighting intensified when a chronic state budget crisis squeezed the courts.” It’s a timely story making the rounds as the Office of Courts considers opening some of its committee meetings, where most of the actual decisions are made. Read it here.