I’ve been resisting using Ricochet as a platform for my attempt to get paid for a job I’ve been doing consistently for the past 3 years as a volunteer, but the cat’s out of the bag. My name is on the ballot for Judge of the L.A. County Superior Court in the June 5 primary. This was a project I was planning for a while with Breitbart. We were going to have a blast with it. When that loss of losses happened, I went to my other guy who pledged to help, Shepard Fairey, to see if he was still game to make me a poster. It had been two years since he graciously offered to do it for me if I ran for Judge. He remembered the conversation and said, “sure, I’ll do it.” So I did it.
Since Andrew was gone, I decided to run a quiet campaign. It’s been fun. I’ve found some crazy stuff about how judges are elected in California. Some of it is quite disappointing, but I’ll post about that later. For now, I just want to thank John Yoo, one of my all time heroes, for coming to my defense in a public controversy about my ballot designation in The Atlantic article posted today. Adam Freedman and K. Douglas Lee also provided ammunition.
The controversy? I asked to be called “Volunteer Temporary Judge” because that’s the best way to describe myself to the voters, and you only get three words. My opponent calls himself “Gang Homicide Prosecutor” which isn’t really a job. He’s a Deputy D.A., but OK, I’m alright with a public servant like that getting the perk of spicing up his title. But why punish me for trying to call myself what I really am? The mere asking to be called a VTJ has got me suspended from the program altogether, and of course the ballot name was rejected.
I call this crap a prior restraint on political speech without a compelling government interest. The good people involved in the controversy here are afraid to call it anything. They just keep fabricating reasons why I’ve been benched from the bench. If only I could get my priests to find reasons why I can’t teach catechism anymore or work in the food program, it would really free up my weeks to make some money for once.
Election Day is Tuesday. It will be fascinating to see how this all shakes out. Why did Shepard Fairey make me a poster as his candidate follow-up to his Obama triumph? Politically, we don’t see eye to eye (he says), but he’s a great guy, a saint in my case perhaps as his one design has financed the entire campaign, and he knows a historical candidate when he sees one.
Here’s the Canon I violated: Constitutional?:
(9)(a) A temporary judge appointed under rule 2.810 of the California
Rules of Court, from the time of appointment and continuing indefinitely after the termination of the appointment, shall not use his or her title or service as a temporary judge as a description of the lawyer’s current or former principal profession, vocation, or occupation on a ballot designation for judicial or other elected office, in an advertisement about the lawyer’s law firm or business, or on a letterhead, business card, or other document that is distributed to the public identifying the lawyer or the lawyer’s law firm.
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