The California Supreme Court yesterday ordered state officials not to make any expenditures in preparing for a special Dec. 13 election on a Republican-sponsored reapportionment plan until Aug. 31, when the court will hear Democratic arguments aimed at blocking the election.
Assembly Republican Leader Robert Naylor said, "It looks like the court's plan is to delay plans for the election until it is too late to prepare for it." But spokesmen for Republican Gov. George Deukmejian and Secretary of State March Fong Eu said they interpreted the ruling as allowing them to spend about $8,000 in preparation for the election.
The reapportionment plan could deprive Democrats of their majorities in the delegation to the U.S. House of Representatives and both houses of the state legislature.
Democrats contend that the plan should be struck down because it violates the state constitution's rule of one reapportionment plan a decade, reduces representation for minorities and violates the U.S. Supreme Court's one-man, one-vote rule with congressional districts that vary too greatly in population.
The special election was called by Deukmejian on July 18 after Democrats had sought to discourage him from doing so by refusing to pass a budget for a record 19 days. Democratic congressmen and assemblymen then filed separate court petitions to block the election.