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'Lesson for Deukmejian'

September 14, 1986

Why would a world class newspaper like The Times feel obligated to reach deep into the morass of the San Francisco legal community just to publicize specious arguments supporting Chief Justice Rose Elizabeth Bird? I refer to the article by James J. Brosnahan (Editorial Pages, Sept. 2), "Lesson for Deukmejian: Court Must Be Separate."

Brosnahan's premises and conclusions fall of their own weight. For example; he states, "The defeat of Chief Justice Rose Elizabeth Bird and Justices Joseph R. Grodin and Cruz Reynoso would allow Deukmejian to dominate (emphasis added) a separate and independent branch of government."

With this thesis as a base, are we then to conclude that Jerry Brown, in absentia yet, still dominates the court because of his past appointees? Brosnahan's faulty logic would force us to very quickly remove Edward Panelli since Deukmejian has already appointed him! Horrors!

However, I must compliment Brosnahan for avoiding the trap so many of Rose Bird's supporters have fallen into while discussing this "judicial independence" issue. These latter proponents would have us believe that it is independence from public scrutiny that is called for, rather than independence from the other two branches of government that is so obviously the case.

Our Constitution makes it crystal clear that the only entities higher in authority than that sacred document are the people themselves. On the day that any branch of government is elevated above the people of this great nation will be the day that government "of the people, by the people, and for the people" will perish off the face of this tired old planet.

R.A. HUGHES

La Habra

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