Based on no inside information whatsoever, some have speculated that Governor Jerry Brown will appoint one of his top aides to fill the long-vacant seat on the Supreme Court.  (I’m one of the “some.”)  The reasoning is that Brown has delayed the appointment because, as his term winds down, he wants the aide to stay with him for as long as possible and also that, if the appointment will be at all controversial, he doesn’t want it to become an issue in next month’s election.

The aide-as-Supreme-Court-justice-to-be speculation has centered on three advisors in particular:  Joshua Groban (a senior advisor to Governor Brown most responsible for advising the Governor on judicial appointments), Peter Krause (the Governor’s legal affairs secretary who, among other things, advises on clemency requests), or Anne Gust Brown (a close aide and the Governor’s wife).

You can take Krause off the list of possible Supreme Court appointees.  Today the Governor appointed him to the Third District Court of Appeal instead.  The Governor’s press release says, “Subject to being confirmed, Krause plans to continue serving in his current position in the Governor’s Office until the end of the year.”

Brown has signaled he will appoint Groban to the Second District Court of Appeal, but that did not come today, which saw five appellate appointments, including Krause.  Although Groban will likely go to the Court of Appeal, he should not yet be eliminated from Supreme Court speculation, as we’ve mentioned before.

Governor Brown’s five appellate appointments today also included an aide besides Krause and Groban.  Gabriel Sanchez — a deputy legal affairs secretary — was named to the First District, Division One.  Like Krause, Sanchez plans to stay at his current job until the end of the year.