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East Bay Stonewall Democratic Club denounces challenge to one of only two LGBTQ judges in Alameda County

February 28, 2018 5:00 PM | Matt Lardner (Administrator)

The East Bay Stonewall Democratic Club has voted to early endorse Alameda County Superior Court Judge Tara Flanagan in her race for re-election. The early endorsement is a reaction to her seat being challenged by retired public defense lawyer Karen Katz.

In the 1990’s, the LGBT community took to the ballot box in San Francisco to elect judges from their community, after years of being shut out by Republican governors George Deukmejian and Pete Wilson. In 2010, Vicky Kolakowski was the first LGBTQ person elected to the Alameda County Superior Court. She was re-elected in 2014.

Prior to the Republican governors, Jerry Brown appointed four LGBTQ judges to the bench, beginning with the Honorable Stephen Lachs, who served on the Los Angeles County Superior Court from 1979-1999.

“We are shocked and saddened that the very same ballot box that was used to empower the LGBTQ community is now being used to disempower us in the Alameda courts,” stated PAC chair Michael Colbruno. “Tara Flanagan is one of only two LGBTQ judges on the bench in Alameda County and she has served as an honorable and independent member of the court. It is reprehensible that the only challenge being mounted this year is aimed at a distinguished LGBTQ member of the court.”

The Federal Judiciary clearly sets forth the standards by which a member of the bench should be judged:

“An independent and honorable judiciary is indispensable to justice in our society. A judge should maintain and enforce high standards of conduct and should personally observe those standards, so that the integrity and independence of the judiciary may be preserved.”

“The East Bay Stonewall Democratic Club will do everything in its power to protect this seat,” stated club president Brendalynn Goodall.

East Bay Stonewall Democratic Club. P.O. Box 386, Berkeley, CA 94701                    Contact us at: eastbaystonewalldems@gmail.com     

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