A group of anti-gay marriage Christian
conservatives are campaigning to replace four Democratic judges with
like-minded social conservatives in California where judges are
directly elected, the AP reported.
The group called Better
Courts Now was founded by Don Hamer, a San Diego pastor who
opposed gay marriage before he died of a heart attack in March.
Hamer campaigned in favor of Proposition 8, the 2008 voter-approved
initiative that trumped a state Supreme Court ruling that legalized
gay marriage in the state.
Dr. Jennifer Morse, founder and
president of the Ruth Institute in San Marcos, a group affiliated
with the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), the nation's most
vociferous opponent of gay marriage, is among the 20 video
testimonials that appear on the group's website.
I “encourage you to join me in
supporting local judicial candidates who take a strong stand for
traditional values,” Morse says.
The group is working to unseat four San
Diego Superior Court judges and replace them with its slate of
socially conservative candidates.
“We believe our country is under
assault and needs Christian values,” said Craig Candelore, one of
the candidates. “Unfortunately, God has called upon us to do this
only with the judiciary.”
The group says it wants to make judges
more accountable to the public: “BCN is standing for
accountability, boundaries and common sense for judges in San Diego
county,” the group says on its website.
Critics say the group's campaign
threatens the court's separation of church and state.
Also supporting the group with video
testimonials are Jim Garlow, lead pastor of Skyline Church in San
Diego County, who took a leadership role in the campaign to ban gay
marriage in California, and Ron Prentice, chairman of the Yes on
Proposition 8 campaign.
Courts Now Facebook page has attracted 1,366 people as of Sunday.
San Diego voters head to the polls on