Kevin MacDonald meet Bill Johnson. Bill is a handsome man of middle age; he wears fashionable glasses and has a respectable law profession. Bill’s running for an open seat on the L.A. County Superior Court bench, and he seems like your kind of guy. As a judicial candidate, Bill has no campaign platform, but he’s not particularly a fan of minorities and in years past has advocated restricting U.S. citizenship to non-white Hispanics and deporting anyone with even a Jewish great-grandparent. More from this week’s Jewish Journal:
Johnson has long been an enigma to outsiders, shunning press requests, including those from The Jewish Journal for this article, and offering only vague biographical details on his campaign Web site.
“For the last 25 years, Bill has provided legal aid to individuals at every income level to help them solve their legal problems, both in the courtroom and before administrative hearings,” his bio, in part, states. “Bill has been married for over 25 years to his wife, Lois, with whom he has five children. They live on a 78 acre ranch in La Cañada where the family raises horses, cows and alpacas.”
But a few weeks ago, the Metropolitan News-Enterprise, a newspaper catering to the legal community, dug deep into Johnson’s past, piecing together disparate details and reports from the last three decades.
The “mystery man,” as the Arizona Daily Star called him in 2006, used a different variation of his full name—William Daniel Johnson—in each of his three campaigns and a pseudonym, James O. Pace, in authoring the 1985 book, “Amendment to the Constitution,” which advocated repealing the 14th and 15th amendments because of guarantees of citizenship and equal rights to nonwhites.
“The ‘Pace Amendment’ would add this verbiage,” the paper reported:
“‘No person shall be a citizen of the United States unless he is a non-Hispanic white of the European race, in whom there is no ascertainable trace of Negro blood, nor more than one-eighth Mongolian, Asian, Asia Minor, Middle Eastern, Semitic, Near Eastern, American Indian, Malay or other non-European or non-white blood, provided that Hispanic whites, defined as anyone with an Hispanic ancestor, may be citizens if, in addition to meeting the aforesaid ascertainable trace and percentage tests, they are in appearance indistinguishable from Americans whose ancestral home is in the British Isles or Northwestern Europe. Only citizens shall have the right and privilege to reside permanently in the United States.’”
These sentiments seem deep-seated in Johnson’s politics.
When he ran in a special election to fill Dick Cheney’s Wyoming congressional seat, Johnson, having just taken residence in Casper, was quoted as saying, “Whites don’t have a future here in this country, and that is ... one of many issues that I am addressing.” The Metropolitan News reported that Johnson was endorsed by a publication of the Nationalist Movement, and his campaign managers were both involved with the Ku Klux Klan, the first an organizer and the second a former Grand Dragon in Texas.
Two years ago, promoting the same values and trying to capitalize on anti-immigration attitudes exemplified by the Minutemen Project, Johnson sought a congressional seat representing Arizona. Granting a rare interview, he told the Jewish News of Greater Phoenix that Israel’s best chance for survival would be, essentially, to adopt the Pace Amendment model.
“In 20 years,” he said, “Israel will cease to exist unless Israel deports all non-Jews from its borders [and] establishes a demilitarized zone around the country; America and Europe repatriate their anti-Israel Arab/Muslim populations; and Israel renews its efforts to call Jews home. Israel’s policy should be to encourage all Jews in America ... who desire the continued existence of Israel to emigrate there.”
Johnson said at the time that he was a “traditional Democrat,” interested in returning the party to its “historical core,” which the Web site, Blog for Arizona, termed “a ploy by extremist racists to inject their hateful invective into the Democratic primary process to make their xenophobic ranting seem bipartisan, and thus mainstream.”
He earned 3 percent of the vote in the primary.
“Those are not Democratic values, in fact I don’t think those are values of any political persuasion,” said Jeff Daar, co-chair of the committee that reviews judicial endorsements for the L.A. County Democratic Party, which sent Johnson a questionnaire that wasn’t returned.
“From everything we know, we don’t need a judge like Mr. Johnson,” Daar said. “We have a good candidate, and we have a really scary candidate.”
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