Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Thursday, February 20, 2020


Page 10



Five Endorsed for Superior Court Judgeships


Linda L. Sun

Los Angeles Superior Court

Office No. 42


Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney Robert Villa is a veteran prosecutor—who has handled more than 200 felony trials—who knows what he is doing in a courtroom, and is a “natural” for a judgeship. We view him as one of the most highly qualified of this year’s judicial candidates.

Notwithstanding that assessment, we cannot endorse him in this particular race—while we would, readily, if he were running for certain other seats. That’s because his opponent, Supervising Deputy Attorney General Linda L. Sun, is, in our view, possessed of special qualities rendering her well suited not only for the Superior Court bench, but potentially higher posts.

She is intelligent, articulate, and able to retain her composure under pressure. Sun is industrious and serious-minded—but with a sense of humor. The candidate is pleasant, considerate, and has a capacity for creating harmony.

Hers would be a courtroom in which attorneys would feel comfortable appearing, and in which parties would receive fair hearings. We urge her election.


Steve Morgan

Los Angeles Superior Court

Office No. 72


Steve Morgan is a well-regarded deputy district attorney. He is respected based on his integrity, legal knowledge, and diligence. From what is known about him, it is expected that on the bench, he would not be overbearing, and would listen.

Myanna Dellinger, an associate professor at a law school in South Dakota, has never tried a case. Ordinarily, that deficiency would eliminate consideration of a candidate for the Superior Court. But Dellinger should not be underrated. She has a brilliant mind and ideal judicial demeanor. Dellinger drafted opinions for Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Proctor Hug Jr.  and did research and writing for U.S. District Court Judge S. James Otero of the Central District of California; is a Fulbright scholar; graduated No. 1 in her class at the University of Oregon School of Law; and has written and lectured extensively on legal topics. 

Immigration attorney Robert F. Jacobs is also running.

While both Morgan and Dellinger have impressive attributes, we endorse Morgan based on his experience being more pertinent to the post that the two are seeking.


Sherry L. Powell

Los Angeles Superior Court

Office No. 97


All too often, voters reluctantly cast a ballot for a candidate deemed to be the “lesser of two evils.” Here, by contrast, a decision must be made as to who is the better of two superb contenders.

Both of them, in our view, deserve a spot on the Los Angeles Superior Court. But there is no option of voting for “both of the above.”

According to office performance evaluations, Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney Sherry L. Powell grasps legal issues, analyzes intelligently, and is capable of extracting from masses of complex legal propositions and facts what is immediately relevant and is able to provide a clearly understandable explanation.

Attorney Timothy D. Reuben, a Harvard law school graduate, has been in practice in Los Angeles County for nearly 40 years and has handled cases in various areas of law. His manner is calm and confident—not confident to the point of arrogance, but in a way that gently conveys his perception that he knows what he’s doing, a perception that is apt to be shared by one listening to him. He makes sense.

Both candidates would, we discern, handle court proceedings expeditiously, but not in so rushed a manner as to risk avoidable error. Powell would, perhaps, be a bit more rigid in her application of rules; Reuben would possibly be less cognizant of nitty-gritty requirements. Yet each would, from what we have ascertained, preside in a manner that would be competent and conscientious.

We fault Reuben for use of the ballot designation, “Attorney/Managing Partner.” That does not comport with a requirement of the Elections Code, but does not constitute out-and-out deception. His business experience in running a firm is a plus. 

A dual endorsement is a cop out. Flipping a coin is not legitimate, nor is “Eenie meenie miney mo.”

In a close call, we endorse Powell based on her demonstrated capacity to render reasoned decisions.


Kenneth M. Fuller

Los Angeles Superior Court

Office No. 129


Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney Kenneth M. Fuller is an experienced litigator who has demonstrated diligence and skill. We endorse him.

West Hills family law attorney Bruce A. Moss is a pleasant person who practices out of his house and has been active in the volunteer temporary judges program. He could no doubt function as a judge, but his qualifications lag significantly behind Fuller’s.

Glendale attorney Mark MacCarley told multiple lies to the Office of Registrar Recorder in a vain attempt to use a ballot designation to which he was incontestably not legally entitled. Untrustworthy, he is unfit for public office.


Manuel Alejandro Almada

Los Angeles Superior Court

Office No. 150


Manuel Alejandro Almada possesses strong communication skills and reasoning ability. He is calm, has a sense of humor, and works hard. He would make an outstanding judge.

Attorney Tom Parsekian is personable and, as others have observed, might be better qualified for a political post than a judgeship.

Attorney Sherri Onica Valle Cole is a delightful individual—or can be. As a Los Angeles deputy city attorney, she demonstrated a confrontational nature in dealing with some of her co-workers. She was seen as self-pitying and self-indulgent, a malingerer. Cole was fired for allegedly entering false information on her work records.

Almada, clearly, is the best choice. Should there be a run-off between Parsekian and Cole, the better alternative would be Parsekian.


Other Races

We have previously endorsed Emily Cole, Office No. 76; David A. Berger, Office No. 80; Adan Montaban, Office No. 145; and Scott Andrew Yang, Office No. 162.

In the race for district attorney, we urge the reelection of Jackie Lacey.


A Better System

There are 23 candidates for nine Superior Court seats. As we have opined in the past, we would hope to see a system, someday, under which all judicial candidates would run in a pack with the top vote-getters—in the this election the nine drawing the greatest number of votes—elected.

The problem, with the current system is that might be (as there are this year) seats for which no fully qualified candidate is running, and other contests where two or more persons deserving of judgeships are competing.


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