N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 329
cordial invitation given to me to express my views today concerning the proposed Judicial Article of our new Constitution. I hope and trust that the delegates will mold a Constitution that will meet the real needs of all of the people of our State.
As a member of the bar, former Assistant Attorney-General, former judge and a legal educator, and not without experience in local, state and federal public affairs, it is my sincere belief that we must afford a decent opportunity for all our citizens to obtain justice. Justice, to my mind, is giving to our citizens their just due. If justice is denied our citizens, no matter what kind of an excellent Constitution you have otherwise provided, it will be a poor one.
I am one who has always been proud of New Jersey's splendid reputation for both its courts and its judges. I am not unmindful of the historic names associated with our judicial organization. The layman has upheld these excellent traditions and the heritage of these distinguished and historic names. I therefore feel that we should not lose sight of the layman's point of view. He should have a voice in the modernization and functioning of our judicial structure. I think that any proposed new plan should not bewilder the layman. Our courts will be more effective by constitutional provisions that give to the average citizen a clear understanding of its principles and provide an efficient and yet simple manner of securing justice in each case. Good things should never be sacrificed. By that I mean, let us make sure that we do not swap a good established practice for a potential uncertainty. Therefore, with utmost respect I bespeak caution in undertaking wholesale changes merely for the sake of change.
I have observed with considerable interest several statements made by illustrious judges, deans and lawyers presented to this Committee and the press concerning this all-important matter. It is my judgment, and I concur in toto with the statements made by Chancellor A. Dayton Oliphant, Chief Justice Clarence E. Case and United States District Court Judge Guy L. Fake.
It is my humble opinion that in order to promote the cause of justice, costs to the litigant must be reduced. This is where the layman is most affected. Simplification of appeals must also be perfected. In this regard, costs and time are saved. I do not believe that appeals must depend upon certain technical conditions. The litigant should be allowed to take an appeal as a matter of right if he or she feels aggrieved. We should not discourage the pursuit for justice, nor should we deprive our litigants of their rights to obtain justice because of the intervention of some technicality.
In order to attract the most competent men of the bar to the bench of our State, we must provide security as to tenure, adequate salary, promotion and suitable pension and retirement rights and privileges. Many a man has spent years in establishing a lucrative
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