Ruling for plantiff in Sanchez V. Modesto. The trial court granted the defense?s motion for judgment on the pleadings after
ruling that the California Voting Rights Act of 2001 was facially invalid under the equal
protection clauses of the state and federal Constitutions. It entered judgment against
plaintiff Latino voters, who allege that, because of racially polarized voting in Modesto,
they are precluded from electing any candidates in the city?s at-large city council
elections. No evidence has been presented in support of or in opposition to this claim.
Rather, at a preliminary stage of the litigation, the trial court struck down the CVRA,
ruling that any possible application would necessarily involve unconstitutional racial
discrimination. As we will explain, Modesto?s arguments do not support disposing of the
Legislature?s act in this summary manner.