Judge Karnow is a Schwarzenegger appointee. Even though he has a home in San Francisco (he has to, to be eligible to be a San Francisco judge) he also has a home in Marin County. Marin County seems to be a hotbed of liberal or moderate Republicans who are passionately in favor of the top-two system (Prop. 14, passed June 2010). They feel that the Republicans in the legislature are too conservative and they want tax increases and they think that the top-two system will reduce the number of conservatives in the legislature.
The state court judges are furious that the state isn't funding the state courts very well, due to the budget shortfall. The courts really are in a crisis. But it is irrational for the judges to think Prop. 14 will change the legislature. Political scientists who have studied state legislatures find that there is no correlation between how polarized or partisan or extreme the legislators are, and what kind of election system is used. This is especially true for Washington state, which has been using top-two starting in 2008 and has a legislature that is 2nd only to California in partisan wrangling (this is based on empirical evidence, gathered for all 50 states).
So Judge Karnow, in his Marin-liberal or moderate Republican social world, hates anyone who is trying to knock down Prop. 14. This is supposition on my part. I can't think of any other motivation. Also he is young and ambitious.
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