Week of October 8, 2007

"Further, citing a 1921 Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision, [fn. 8] he contends he has an unfettered right to circulate a petition and to present it to the sovereign, which right “cannot lawfully be infringed, even momentarily, by the state.” He argues “[a] citizen’s right to petition his government is sacred. The right to redress grievances by placing them before the sovereign has been fundamental to Western Civilization since the 13th Century—since the signing of the Magna Carta. Throughout our history, the Right to Petition has, traditionally, been jealously guarded as ‘one of the most precious rights of our democratic process.’ [Citation.]” In taking this position, Stansbury overlooks the fact there is no constitutional right to place an invalid initiative on the ballot. (Dunkl, supra, 86 Cal.App.4th at p. 389.) Moreover, he ignores entirely the body of law which recognizes preelection challenges to initiative measures."

fn.8 Spayd v. Ringing Rock Lodge (1921) 270 Pa. 67

Justice Douglas P. Miller
City of Riverside v. Stansbury (Oct. 12, 2007, E040125 & E042973)
p. 13