N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 423

Thursday, July 10, 1947 (Morning session)

committees of Congress. Oftentimes the judges will go to the committees of Congress and urge them of themselves.

I did that recently in a case that might amuse you a little, because the House thought we were too extravagant in having secretaries and law clerks. We went down before the committee of the Senate and said we thought it would be a little hard not to have secretaries, and I said one of my District judges said, "My God, it's hard enough for us to understand what you say anyway, but if we had to read your writing I think ..." Well, that is irrelevant.


That really is the system. Now, we have been extremely happy in getting Mr. Chandler. There could not be any more intelligent or devoted administrator with the interest of the courts at heart, and he is so transparently honest and not out to get anything for himself, and the thing is so free from any political significance, that I am told, and I think it is true, he has established for himself an influence before the committees which is almost unique. They know when Henry Chandler asks for a thing there is no undercover about it; that they can take what he says absolutely to the letter, and he gets for us in the end all we deserve and I sometimes think he gets a little more than we deserve. I fancy the committees are very refreshed where they get a case presented that they can have that confidence in. We have found that system of administration a great step forward. Of course, it's not perfect by a long shot, and there are human obstacles - even among judges perhaps you've found that. So that I am not claiming too much, but it's the beginning, I think, of real improvement as long as we can keep Mr. Chandler or get a successor as good as he. We look to it as an immense step in advance.

MR. DIXON: Does Congress have authority over your rules of procedure and rules of evidence, and if so, do they exercise it in what you would call a wise manner?

JUDGE HAND: No, they have it but they don't take it. As far as procedure goes, there was a statute under which these federal civil rules have been promulgated. It gave to the Supreme Court the power to enact rules confined to procedure. The Supreme Court exercised its power by appointing this committee of lawyers - they were very distinguished men - and they worked for, oh, I think, probably three or four years; they did an immense amount of work on it. They then presented those to the Supreme Court, which had to pass on them. The statute read that if the Supreme Court assented to the rules which they passed, then the Attorney-General should recommend them to Congress and they should go into effect. I think it was - I can't tell you exactly - the idea was, after they had been before Congress long enough so that any objections could be voiced in Congress. In other words, the court didn't have the

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