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Pac. 896; Southern Cal. Lumber Co. v. Peters, 3 Cal. App. 478, 86 Pac. 816.)
A statute will not be declared unconstitutional, except when the conflict between it and the Constitution is palpable and incapable of reconciliation. (Stockton etc. R. R. Co. v. Common Council of Stockton, 41 Cal. 147; People v. Şassovich, 29 Cal. 480.)
Where there is a reasonable doubt as to its constitutionality, its constitutionality should be affirmed. (University of California v. Bernard, 57 Cal. 612; Bourland v. Hildreth, 26 Cal. 161.)
An act is to be so construed, if possible, as to make it constitutional. (French v. Teschemaker, 24 Cal. 518.)
Presumptions as to constitutionality. See 6 R. C. L., 88 98-103, pp. 97-104.
Conflict with the Constitution.—In passing upon the constitutionality of a statute, the court is not required to imagine some possible contingency in which its provisions might conflict with the Constitution. (Woodward v. Fruitvale Sanitary Dist., 99 Cal. 554, 34 Pac. 239.)
In order to declare a statute unconstitutional, it is not necessary to find in the Constitution some specific inhibition which has been disregarded, or some express command which has been disobeyed; but if the statute is contrary to the first principles of the social compact, it is void. (Britton v. Board of Election Commrs., 129 Cal. 337, 51 L. R. A. 115, 61 Pac. 1115.)
Nor is it necessary to find some specific inhibition which, in precise language, refers to the particular law. (People v. Lynch, 51 Cal. 15, 21 Am. Rep. 677.)
But the courts cannot declare a law void upon the ground that it is contrary to the "spirit and policy of the Constitution," unless it is at variance with some express or clearly implied provision of that instrument. (Cohen v. Wright, 22 Cal. 293; Pattison v. Board of Suprs. of Yuba Co., 13 Cal. 175.) When statutes will be declared void because conflicting with the
Constitution. See note, 48 Am. Dec. 269.
Conflict with another statute.—The constitutionality of one act cannot be tested by the provisions of another. (Reed v. Omnibus R. R. Co., 33 Cal. 212.)
Motives. The motives which induce legislative action are not a subject of judicial inquiry, and a legislative act cannot be declared unconstitutional because, in the opinion of the court, it was or might have been the result of improper considerations. (People v. Glenn Co., 100 Cal. 419, 38 Am. St. Rep. 305, 35 Pac. 302; People v. Bigler, 5 Cal. 23.)
The motives of the authors of a statute are equally immaterial. (Stockton etc. R. R. Co. v. Common Council of Stockton, 41 Cal. 147.)
Judicial inquiry into motives prompting enactment of legislative
ordinance. See note, Ann. Cas. 1912A, 716. Expediency, justice and policy of legislation. See 6 R. C. L.,
88 104-110, pp. 104-111.
Beneficial character. In determining the constitutionality of a statute, its beneficial character cannot be considered. (Marsh v. Hanly, 111 Cal. 368, 43 Pac. 975.)
On the other hand, in construing the Constitution, the courts are bound to suppose that any inconveniences involved in the application of its provisions were considered in its formation, and accepted as less intolerable than those avoided, or as compensated by countervailing advantages. (People v. Pendegast, 96 Cal. 289, 31 Pac. 103.)
Impracticable statute.-A statute may also be declared void if it is impracticable. Thus an act providing for the appointment of three disinterested freeholders in the city and county of San Francisco to form an assessment district, which might include the entire city and county, and to assess the lands of the district for certain improvements, is void as impracticable, since it would be impossible to select disinterested commissioners. (Montgomery Avenue Case, 54 Cal. 579.)
Long acquiescence in validity of statute as affecting its consti
tutionality. See notes, 16 Ann. Cas. 877: Ann. Cas. 1912A, 505.
EFFECT OF UNCONSTITUTIONALITY-Separable provisions.—The mere fact that certain provisions of a statute are in conflict with the Constitution does not necessarily render the entire act void. Where the court can see that an act, after eliminating all unconstitutional features, is still such an act as it may be presumed the legislature would have passed had it known such parts were void, the remainder may stand. (Dwyer v. Parker, 115 Cal. 544, 47 Pac. 372.)
If the different parts are severable and independent of each other, and the constitutional provisions are capable of being carried into effect after the unconstitutional part has been eliminated, and it is clear that it was the intent of the legislature to enact these provisions irrespective of the other, the unconstitutional provisions will be disregarded, and the statute read as if such provisions were not there. (Hale v. McGettigan, 114 Cal. 112, 45 Pac. 1049; Lathrop v. Mills, 19 Cal. 513; French v. Teschemaker, 24 Cal. 518; Mills v. Sargent, 36 Cal. 379; Christy v. Board of Supervis. ors, 39 Cal. 3; McCabe v. Jefferds, 122 Cal. 302, 54 Pac. 897 ; Rood v. McCargar, 49 Cal. 117; Johnson v. Tautphaus, 127 Cal. 605, 60 Pac. 172; People v. Whyler, 41 Cal. 351; MCGowan v. McDonald, 111 Cal. 57, 52 Am. St. Rep. 149, 43 Pac. 418; Cahen v. Wells, 132 Cal. 447, 64 Pac. 699; In re Hallawell, 8 Cal. App. 563, 97 Pac. 320; In re Spencer, 149 Cal. 396, 117 Am. St. Rep. 137, 9 Ann. Cas. 1105, 86 Pac.
Inseparable provisions.—Where the constitutional and unconstitutional provisions of a statute are so inseparably blended together as to make it clear that either clause would not have been enacted without the other, the whole act is void. (San Francisco v. Spring Valley Water Works, 48 Cal. 493; Reed v. Omnibus R. R. Co., 33 Cal. 212; Orange Co. v. Harris, 97 Cal. 600, 32 Pac. 594; Wills v. Austin, 53 Cal. 152; Purdy v. Sinton, 56 Cal. 133; People v. Perry, 79 Cal. 105, 21 Pac. 423; Marsh v. Hanly, 111 Cal. 368, 43 Pac. 975; Lathrop v. Mills, 19 Cal. 513; Pioche v. Paul, 22 Cal. If a provision be unconstitutional it cannot be given effect in part, if the result of giving it such partial effect would be to accomplish a purpose which the law-making power never intended, or where the legislative intent is doubtful. (Robert v. Police Court, 148 Cal. 131, 82 Pac. 838.)
Contracts and other statutes.—No repeal by implication can result from a provision in a subsequent statute, when that provision is itself devoid of constitutional force. (McAllister v. Hamlin, 83 Cal. 361, 23 Pac. 357.)
A contract entered into in view of an act later held unconstitutional is not made under a mistake of law. (Cooley v. Calaveras Co., 121 Cal. 482, 53 Pac. 1075.)
But a contract entered into by a public board or officer by sole authority of an unconstitutional statute is void, and not subject to ratification. (Phelan v. San Francisco, 6 Cal. 531.)
The legislature may refer to an unconstitutional act to indicate its will in respect to a constitutional purpose. (People v. Bircham, 12 Cal. 50.)
An unconstitutional act cannot have the effect to repeal prior acts on the same subject, though assuming to do so. (In re Clary, 149 Cal. 732, 87 Pac. 580.)
Liability for acts done under unconstitutional statute. See note,
64 Am. Dec. 51.
Page Abbott v. Jack..
482 Abeel v. Clark...
.145, 244, 245, 246, 255, 256, 447, 580 Ableman v. Booth.
132 Ackerman, In re.
.130, 440, 450 Adams v. Town.
301 Adams Express Co. v. Ohio.
549 Addison v. Saulnier.
143, 515, 519 Addison's Trial
. 234, 235 Aetna Indemnity Co. v. Altadena Mining etc. Co..
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379 Ah Cheung, Ex parte.
448 Ah Cue, Ex parte.
214, 581 Ahern, Ex parte..
.. viii, 347 Ah Fook, Ex parte.
155, 581, 582 Ah King v. Police Court.
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454 Ah You, In re...
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162 Alameda County v. Dalton.
538 Albion River R. R. Co. v. Hesser.
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505 Allen v. Allen..
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560 Anderson, Ex parte.
210 Anderson v. Byrnes.
175 Anderson y. De Urioste.
381 Andrews, Ex parte....
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136 Anixter, Ex parte.
449 Apple v. Zemansky.
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439 Arcata v. Arcata etc. R. R. Co..
380 Arfsten v. Superior Court...
444 Argenti v. San Francisco.
464, 573 Armstrong, Ex parte...
336 Arnold v. Van Brunt.
318 Arnoult v. New Orleans..
252 Arroyo Ditch etc. Co. v. Superior Court..
325 Arwine v. Board of Medical Examiners.
211 Astell v. Phillippi..
338 Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Ry. Co., In re.
500 Atchison etc. Ry. Co. v. Los Angeles Co..
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