Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
“Ethics inquiry ordered after Scalia flap” ["In Brief," NLJ, May 31] appears to proceed from an erroneous premise. The story states that U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist “ordered a study of federal judicial ethics” and links his action to the recent controversy involving Justice Antonin Scalia’s refusal to recuse himself. My understanding is that the committee’s inquiry will concern chiefly, if it is not confined to, experience under the Judicial Councils Reform and Judicial Conduct and Disability Act of 1980. That statute does not apply to justices of the Supreme Court of the United States; moreover, its intended reach (conduct harmful to the administration of justice) only partially overlaps with “judicial ethics” as commonly understood. The chief justice’s remarks upon appointing the committee specifically refer to the 1980 act and to recent criticism of its implementation by members of Congress. In any event, it is inconceivable (at least to me) that the chief justice would appoint a committee composed primarily of members of lower courts to look into the practices of the Supreme Court or its justices. There may be good reason to inquire about the recusal practices of the justices of the Supreme Court, but I do not believe that your readers should expect any recommendations on that subject from this committee. Stephen B. Burbank Philadelphia The writer is David Berger Professor for the Administration of Justice at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, was a member of the National Commission on Judicial Discipline and Removal and serves as chairman of the Judicial Independence and Accountability Task Force of the American Judicature Society.

This content has been archived. It is available exclusively through our partner LexisNexis®.

To view this content, please continue to Lexis Advance®.

Not a Lexis Advance® Subscriber? Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® is now the exclusive third party online distributor of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® customers will be able to access and use ALM's content by subscribing to the LexisNexis® services via Lexis Advance®. This includes content from the National Law Journal®, The American Lawyer®, Law Technology News®, The New York Law Journal® and Corporate Counsel®, as well as ALM's other newspapers, directories, legal treatises, published and unpublished court opinions, and other sources of legal information.

ALM's content plays a significant role in your work and research, and now through this alliance LexisNexis® will bring you access to an even more comprehensive collection of legal content.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]


ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.