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California IN BRIEF : SAN FRANCISCO

Judge Steps Down in Suit Against Wilson

September 25, 1996|From Times staff and wire reports

While denying any conflict of interest, a judge has granted Gov. Pete Wilson's request that he step down from a suit accusing Wilson of violating public-meeting laws in the University of California's affirmative action vote. Superior Court Judge William Cahill said Monday that Wilson was entitled to remove him from the case under a state law allowing each party to disqualify one judge for any reason. On Friday, Wilson's lawyer sought to challenge Cahill for cause, a move that would have preserved the governor's right to remove a future judge in the case. Wilson said Cahill had a conflict because his ex-wife served on a fund-raising council for the American Civil Liberties Union and had done some work for the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights. The ACLU and the Lawyers Committee both represent the student newspaper suing Wilson. The suit, filed by the Daily Nexus of Santa Barbara and one of its reporters, accuses Wilson of violating a law that requires state agencies to meet and take action in public.

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