Tani Cantil-Sakauye

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Tani is perceived as moderate by those reporting on her, and is reported to be a Republican[1]. Nevertheless, with a majority of Republicans on the court, we have one of the most liberal courts in the nation. Yet none are ever labeled "liberal", only moderate. Moderate, then, in California, seems to mean moderate to liberal, and Republican justices seem to be quite susceptible to liberality. With Schwarzenegger having gone from moderate to liberal in his current term, I am also dubious of anyone he has picked. I would not feel safe with anything less than a conservative justice, so I am tempted to recommend a no vote. Nevertheless, I want to first examine her record.

Chief Justice Ronald George, who Tani Cantil-Sakauye would be replacing, is to be ending his term on January 2nd,[2] so presumably Tani Cantil-Sakauye will not have an opportunity to publish an opinion in the California Supreme Court before we vote in November. We shall have to content ourselves with her appeals court record and what little else we may find.

JudgeVoterGuide.com recommended voting no against her in 2010, though they also recommended voting against Ming William Chin. I supported Chin due to his stance on Proposition 8 and its predecessor, since I have considered gay marriage to be a rather critical issue and I have read the decisions and know what the analysis was like. JudgeVoterGuide.com seems to rely on analysis from Reality Alert for this recommendation. The analysis seems very conservative, which speaks well, and inasmuch as I already know anything about the issues, it appears accurate. It is, in those respects, the best information I've found, but the information is not deep enough to trust it entirely.

Drawing the same-sex marriage line here, I've recommended against Tani Cantil-Sakauye in 2010, due to her performance of such a marriage during the brief time it was legal. (Though I'd like to know more about the circumstances surrounding the marriage she performed. Was it the sort of thing she was obligated to do, or was it taken on voluntarily?) She has apparently refused to comment on the topic apart from this action.

Tani Cantil-Sakauye is also reportedly an admirer of Sandra Day O'Connor, which earns Tani some distrust.


3rd District Court of Appeal


External Sources


  1. Maura Dolan, "Panel approves Tani Cantil-Sakauye's nomination for chief justice of California high court", http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2010/08/tani-cantilsakauye-named-chief-justice-of-california-high-court.html, Los Angeles Times
  2. http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/presscenter/newsreleases/NR31-10.PDF
  3. http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/opinions.cgi?Courts=C Opinions of the Court, 3rd District Court of Appeal