In 2014, for the second time in Gov. Jerry Brown’s historic four-term career, he was presented with the chance to reshape the California Supreme Court.
The first “Jerry Brown Court” became better known as the Bird Court and ended with the disastrous retention election of 1986, in which voters removed three of Brown’s appointees, including Chief Justice Rose Bird.
But decades after that debacle, opportunity knocked again for Brown with the retirements of Justices Marvin Baxter and Joyce Kennard – the two longest-serving appointees of Gov. George Deukmejian. Together with his previous appointment of Justice Goodwin Liu in 2011, Brown appointees are again the largest segment of the seven-member court. Meanwhile, California has seen the mellowing of the remaining appointees of Gov. Pete Wilson (Justices Kathryn Werdegar and Ming Chin) and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (Justice Carol Corrigan and Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye).
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