Court Vacancies Force Judges From Retirement

Friday, March 18, 2011

There are 95 vacancies in the federal courts, forcing semi-retired senior judges to pick up the slack — a lot of it. Arizona judges are under particular duress; their courts have such a back load, they can’t meet the Speedy Trial Act, a law that requires courts to try criminal defendants within 70 days after they are charged. Caseloads in most federal courts continue to increase while the number of active judges shrinks — and yet 45  judicial nominees are languishing in the Senate. Why hasn't the Senate confirmed these nominees? 

How is the shortage of federal judges affecting the court system and the administration of justice across the United States?

Judith Resnik, Arthur Liman Professor of Law at Yale Law School and author of "Representing Justice: Invention, Controversy, and Rights in City-States and Democratic Courtrooms" explains the situation. Judge Barrington Parker from the Second Circuit Court of Appeals talks about what judges can do.


Judge Barrington Parker and Professor Judith Resnik

Produced by:

Jillian Weinberger

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