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UC Davis Experts on Fall Ballot Initiatives

October 14, 2008

The following UC Davis faculty are available to comment on Propositions 2, 4, 5, 8 and 11 on California's fall ballot, as well as on the initiative process itself.

Propositions and the initiative process

Floyd Feeney, the Homer G. and Ann Berryhill Angelo Professor of Law for International Legal and Communication Studies at the UC Davis School of Law, is an expert on the California initiative process. He served as legal adviser to the California Assembly Speaker's Commission on the California Initiative Process in 2000-2001 and is co-author of the 1992 book, "Improving the California Initiative Process: Options for Change." Feeney also specializes in criminal law and procedure. Contact: Floyd Feeney, School of Law, fffeeney@ucdavis.edu, (530) 752-2893.

Proposition 2: Animal housing

Joy Mench, an animal science professor and director of the UC Davis Center for Animal Welfare, has found that conventional cage systems restrict hens' movement and natural behaviors, but that free-roaming chickens are more likely to fall victim to cannibalism, health problems associated with increased exposure to their manure, and broken bones. She suggests that so-called "furnished" cage systems, which provide areas for nesting, perching and dust-bathing, may be a humane and cost-effective solution. Contact: Joy Mench, Center for Animal Welfare, (530) 752-7125, jamench@ucdavis.edu.

Daniel Sumner, the Frank H. Buck Jr. Professor of Agricultural and Resource Economics and director of the University of California Agricultural Issues Center, is an expert on California's $337 million egg industry. He is an author of a July report issued by the University of California Agricultural Issues Center, "Economic Effects of Proposed Restrictions on Egg-laying Hen Housing in California," which concluded that Proposition 2 would have the effect of shifting most if not all egg production in California outside the state. The study did not address issues of animal welfare. Contact: Dan Sumner, Agricultural and Resource Economics, (530) 752-1668, dan@primal.ucdavis.edu.

Proposition 4: Parental notification and waiting period for minors seeking abortions

Diane Marie Amann, professor of law, says that contrary to the assertions of some proponents, Proposition 4 would not help prevent sexual predation. "There is virtually nothing in the text that aims at that goal," she says. Amann is a specialist in constitutional and criminal law. Contact: Diane Marie Amann, (530) 754-9099, dmamann@ucdavis.edu.

Lisa Ikemoto, professor of law, offers a bioethicist's perspective on the debate over Proposition 4. Her scholarship and teaching focus on the regulation of fertility and pregnancy, reproductive justice, health care disparities related to gender and race, and the role of racism in the use of public health powers. Her many articles include "In the Shadows: Women of Color in Health Disparities Policy Work" (UC Davis Law Review, 2006), "Doctrine at the Gate: Religious Restrictions in Health Care," (Journal of Gender Specific Medicine, 2001) and "The Code of Perfect Pregnancy: At the Intersection of the Ideology of Motherhood, the Practice of Defaulting to Science, and the Interventionist Mindset of Law," (Ohio State Law Journal, 1992). Contact: Lisa Ikemoto, School of Law, (530) 754-6463, lcikemoto@ucdavis.edu.

Carole Joffe, professor of sociology, is a leading scholar of abortion politics. She argues that most teenagers already talk with their parents about their abortion plans, and that parental notification laws are not the answer for those teens who do not tell their parents about a pregnancy out of fear of violence or of being kicked out of the home. Joffe is the author of the 1995 book, "Doctors of Conscience: The Struggle to Provide Abortion before and after Roe v. Wade," a chapter in the 1998 book, "The Fifty Years War: Abortion Politics in the United States, 1950-2000," and "The Religious Right and the Reshaping of Sexual Policy," published in the March 2007 issue of Sexuality Research & Social Policy. She blogs on reproductive health at http://www.rhrealitycheck.org/blog/966. Contact: Carole Joffe, Sociology, (530) 752-9108, cejoffe@ucdavis.edu.

Proposition 5: Nonviolent offender rehabilitation

Ryken Grattet, associate professor of sociology, has done extensive research on parole violations and revocations in California and can talk about Proposition 5's potential impacts on nonviolent offender rehabilitation. Grattet is a co-author of the 2008 report, "Parole Violations and Revocations in California," funded by the National Institute of Justice. From 2005 to 2006, he took academic leave to serve as acting secretary of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation's Office of Research. He has also published on the causes and consequences of parole violations, characteristics of female offenders, and legislative and judicial responses to hate crimes. He is a 2002 recipient of the Society for the Study of Social Problems' Award for Outstanding Scholarship. Contact: Ryken Grattet, Sociology, (530) 754-6137, rtgrattet@ucdavis.edu.

Proposition 8: Gay marriage

Vikram Amar, professor and associate dean of the UC Davis School of Law, argues that the power of the people of California to undo a California Supreme Court ruling, as Proposition 8 aims to do, has troubling implications for minority rights in arenas other than gay marriage. Amar writes, teaches and consults in constitutional law, civil procedure and remedies. He is a co-author of the 2005 book "Constitutional Law: Cases and Materials" and has published in a variety of journals, including the Yale Law Journal, the Stanford Law Review and the Cornell Law Review. He authors a bi-weekly column on constitutional matters for http://findlaw.com/. Contact: Vik Amar, School of Law, (530) 752-8808, (925) 858-8855 (cell), vdamar@ucdavis.edu.

Alan Brownstein, the Boochever and Bird Endowed Chair for the Study and Teaching of Freedom and Equality at the UC Davis School of Law, argues that protecting the right of gay men and lesbians to marry may help to reaffirm and reinforce religious freedom in our legal system. Brownstein is a nationally recognized expert on church-state issues, freedom of speech, privacy and autonomy rights, and other constitutional law subjects. His articles have been published in numerous academic journals including the Stanford Law Review, Cornell Law Review, UCLA Law Review and Constitutional Commentary. He is the editor of "The Establishment of Religion Clause: Its Constitutional History and the Contemporary Debate," the first volume of a series of anthologies on the Bill of Rights published by Prometheus Books. Contact: Alan Brownstein, School of Law, (530) 752-2586, aebrownstein@ucdavis.edu.

Gregory Herek, professor of psychology, was one of the authors of an amicus curiae brief submitted by the American Psychological Association and other leading mental health organizations to the California Supreme Court for its consideration in Lockyer v. City and County of San Francisco, the gay marriage case decided May 15. The brief, cited in footnote 59 of the court's decision, states that "... sexual orientation is integrally linked to the intimate personal relationships that human beings form with others to meet their deeply felt needs for love, attachment, and intimacy." Herek is the author of the book, "Hate Crimes: Confronting Violence Against Lesbians and Gay Men." He was awarded the 1996 American Psychological Association's Early Career Award for Distinguished Contributions to Psychology and the Public Interest. He blogs at http://www.beyondhomophobia.com/blog. Contact: Greg Herek, Psychology, (530) 752-8085, gmherek@ucdavis.edu.

Courtney Joslin, professor of law, served as an attorney at the National Center for Lesbian Rights, where she litigated cases on behalf of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and their families. She is a past executive editor of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review. Her areas of interest include family and relationship recognition, particularly focusing on same-sex and unmarried couples. Contact: Courtney Joslin, School of Law, (415) 902-7981 (cell), cgjoslin@ucdavis.edu.

Proposition 11: Redistricting

"Proposition 11 is a cure that cannot work to a problem that does not exist," argues Anthony E. Chavez, a clinical professor of law. Chavez says that the measure would create an unrepresentative and unaccountable redistricting commission that, perhaps unintentionally, would ultimately shift mapmaking control to Republicans. Chavez is a former voting rights attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice and served as the director of voting rights litigation for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund. He received a Special Achievement Award from the U.S. Department of Justice for his work in the Civil Rights Division's Voting Section and was invited by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce to serve on an advisory committee to help reduce the minority undercount for the 2000 Census. He has testified regarding voting rights or census issues before the U.S. House Judiciary Subcommittee and the California Assembly. Contact: Anthony E. Chavez, School of Law, (530) 754-8148, aechavez@ucdavis.edu.

Chris Elmendorf, professor of law, can talk about Proposition 11's potential for electoral reform. Elmendorf's teaching and research interests include election law, administrative law, constitutional law, and property and natural resources law. His recent writings have focused on judicial formulation and administration of doctrines to implement the fundamental right to vote. His work has been published in the New York University Law Review, the Duke Law Journal and the Election Law Journal, among other journals. Contact: Chris Elmendorf, School of Law, (530) 752-5756, cselmendorf@ucdavis.edu.

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