Duncan Hosie this week argued in the Washington Post that, despite a conservative U.S. Supreme Court, “liberals still have an avenue to protect rights they see as fundamental: state courts and constitutions,” but only “if Democratic governors and voters prioritize putting liberal judges on the bench.”

The column points to California’s Supreme Court as illustrating the “phenomenon” of state courts being “venues for articulating legal norms and theories that changed the understanding of federal constitutional rights over time.” Hosie writes that, “[f]rom the 1950s to the early 1980s, the . . . Court issued pioneering decisions that expanded civil liberties, environmental protections and consumer rights.”

[Note: a different version of this post was published earlier, but disappeared when At The Lectern transferred to its new format.]


A conservative SCOTUS and the “much more liberal” California Supreme Court

“Now more than ever we need the California Supreme Court”

Justice Liu on independent state constitutions

50 years since Loving; 69 years since Perez

The California Supreme Court is followed more often than any other state high court