There’s good news from the courts about the initiative process. Will that good news stop bad news in the legislature?

To that good news: a judge effectively stood up for reason when it comes to ballot initiatives, ruling that that Attorney General Kamala Harris did not have to circulate a measure requiring the murder of gay people. Because Californians are nuts when it comes to ballot initiatives, many had criticized Harris for asking the court to allow her not to circulate the measure, and the judge agreed, pointing out that it was “patently unconstitutional.”

Let’s hope this decision stands as a basic test of sorts to block clearly unconstitutional measures that violate our human rights. A proper initiative process needs such exemptions, as I’ve argued in this space previously.

Let’s also hope that this good news stops bad news: an attempt by legislators to limit access to the initiative process by raising the filing fee from $200 to $2500. I explained here previously why this legislation was wrong-headed.

But the backers of that legislation had been able to use the gay murder initiative to rationalize limiting access to the process. The judge, by stopping that initiative in its tracks, has shown that there’s no need for such an increase in the filing fee.

The sponsors should abandon their legislation, and celebrate these two facts: that we have an initiative process that includes a basic review – and that is still accessible to anyone with $200.