Selected Papers of Homer Cummings, Attorney General of the United States, 1933-1939

By Carl Brent Swisher; Homer S. Cummings | Go to book overview

4. Independent Administrative Organization for the Courts

From a letter to the President, February 2, 1937:

A FUNCTIONARY might well be created to be known as a proctor, or by some other suitable title, to be appointed by the Supreme Court and to act under its direction, charged with the duty of continuously keeping informed as to the state of federal judicial business throughout the United States and of assisting the Chief Justice in assigning judges to pressure areas.


A suggestion; an office memorandum to the Solicitor General, October 11, 1937:

I hand you herewith a memorandum relative to the status of senior circuit judges. I have been toying with the idea that there might be some advantage in legislation which would in effect recognize the status of a senior circuit judge and more clearly define his administrative powers and provide also that, upon reaching the age of seventy, his administrative authority would be passed to the next circuit judge under seventy on the same bench, and that this process should be continued so that we would always be sure of having a senior circuit judge under the age of seventy.

I do not know whether it is worth while to take up this matter at the present time. I have made no analysis to see exactly how it would work and what judges it would affect. I have merely been concerned with the principle involved which would be to have younger and more vigorous judges in charge of the actual administration of the circuit courts. I think the idea is sound as a matter of principle.

-220-

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