recently established by the voters to draw voting district boundaries (instead of theLegislature)
in light of population changes identified in the national census undertaken atthe beginning of each decade, completed its eight-month-long task in August 2011 andcertified new voting district maps for not only the state Senate, but also for the stateAssembly, the United States Congress, and the State Board of Equalization. TheSecretary of State and county election officials have been using these four Commission-certified maps since mid-August 2011 in preparation for the upcoming June and November 2012 elections.County election officials and the Secretary of State currently also are in the process of verifying the petitions submitted to determine whether there are sufficientvalid signatures to qualify the proposed referendum for placement on the November 2012general election ballot. If the referendum qualifies, the state Senate map certified by theCommission will automatically be stayed, presenting the question of what Senate districtsshould be used for the 2012 primary and general elections of the state Senate. In view of the numerous interconnected election-related events that must occur soon after the end of January 2012 in order to avoid disrupting the 2012 primary and general elections,
thisinitiative power, by contrast, refers to the authority of the people to propose statutes andconstitutional amendments to be submitted to a vote of the electorate, and the authority of the electorate to adopt or reject the proposed measure. (Cal. Const., art. II, § 8.)
See California Constitution, article XXI, sections 1 to 3.
The calendar of steps in preparation for the June 5, 2012, Primary Election isavailable on the Secretary of State’s Web site, <http://www.sos.ca.gov/elections/2012-elections/calendar/pdfs/section-6-primary-election.pdf> (as of Jan. 27, 2012). Among theevents particularly relevant to the present case are the following: From December 30,2011, to February 23, 2012, state Senate candidates may obtain, in lieu of paying filingfees, the requisite number of signatures of registered voters who are eligible to vote for that candidate — in other words, those who are registered in the district in which thecandidate will run (Elec. Code, § 8106); and between February 13, 2012, and March 9,2012, candidates must file a “Declaration of Candidacy” and nomination papers (
.,§§ 8020, 8040, 8041) for the district in which he or she will run.The Secretary of State has submitted a declaration by Jana M. Lean, Chief of theElections Division, describing procedures used to implement the new district lines.2