Judge Rules That Gender Quotas for Corporate Board Members Violate the California Constitution
From The National Law Review
As we reported in our blog discussing an LASC judge striking down a law that required California companies to have racially diverse boards (AB 979): Judge Rules That Race and LGBT Quotas for Corporate Board Members Violate the California Constitution, another LASC judge was presiding over a trial in which the plaintiff was challenging a different law that required California companies to have a certain number of women on their boards. The judge in the second matter, the Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Maureen Duffy-Lewis has handed down her ruling striking down that law as well. California Secretary of State Shirley Weber announced that she has directed an appeal, but a formal appeal has not yet been filed.
Similarly, to AB 979, SB 826 faced opposition from Judicial Watch, a conservative activist group. Judicial Watch sued the secretary of state on behalf of California taxpayers to enjoin enforcement (i.e., prohibit by judicial order) of SB 826, and on May 13, 2022, LASC judge, Judge Duffy-Lewis, held in the group’s favor. Robin Crest, et al. v. Alex Padilla (No.19-STCV-27561).
Judge Duffy-Lewis found that Judicial Watch had satisfied their burden of proof—that Judicial Watch needed to and did prove that the law was “presumptively unconstitutional” and “men and women are similarly situated for purposes of SB 826’s gender-based quota.” The burden then shifted to the state to prove that there was “(1) a compelling state interest, (2) that SB 826 is necessary and (3) that SB 826 is narrowly tailored.”
Read more here…