January 21, 2001 |
Just weeks after the controversial Supreme Court decision that ended manual recounts in Florida's presidential voting--effectively awarding the White House to George W. Bush--Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist gave a little-noticed history lecture suggesting that sometimes members of the court may have to become involved in political matters to prevent national crisis.
February 16, 1987 |
Saying that the federal courts are being swamped by "more and more cases of less and less importance," Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia on Sunday proposed a major restructuring of the federal judiciary that would move the nation toward a system of specialized national courts. In a speech to the American Bar Assn., Scalia portrayed a once-elite federal court system that is being crushed under the weight of an enormous caseload.
March 16, 1989 |
Supreme Court Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist, addressing a rare press conference, warned Wednesday that the caliber of the judiciary will deteriorate unless Congress moves quickly to raise the salaries of federal judges.
August 14, 1986 |
The Senate Judiciary Committee gave President Reagan a double victory in his efforts to remake the Supreme Court in his image today by approving William H. Rehnquist as chief justice and Antonin Scalia to replace him as associate justice. The committee approved Rehnquist on a 13-5 vote to be the nation's 16th chief justice despite opposition from Democrats who said he was not candid about his racial views. The panel gave Scalia, a federal appeals court judge, its unanimous approval, 18 to 0.
January 1, 2000 |
Say what you will, the 20th century has been a good one for litigation. In 1999, 320,194 cases were filed in federal district courts, a 23-fold increase over the year 1900 when 13,605 cases were filed, Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist said in his year-end report on the judiciary. In addition, another 1.3 million federal bankruptcy petitions were filed. And this century, "I hasten to point out, has another year to run. Just ask the makers of '2001: A Space Odyssey,' " Rehnquist added.
January 1, 1992 |
The federal courts are in danger of being overwhelmed if Congress persists in assigning U.S. judges the responsibility for handling new cases involving guns, drug murders and sexual assaults, Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist said Tuesday in a year-end report. Rehnquist, a former Phoenix attorney, compared the federal court system to a Western desert town facing overdevelopment amid a water shortage. "In that situation, we must conserve water, not think of building new subdivisions," he said.
March 15, 1990 |
A panel of senior federal judges, in an apparent rebuff to Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist, called on Congress Wednesday to enact legal safeguards for defendants in capital cases and Death Row inmates. The Judicial Conference of the United States, the policy-making body for the federal courts, said that murder defendants should be assured of competent legal representation, beginning with their trials and extending through any appeals, up to the nation's highest court.
January 1, 1990 |
The number of drug cases filed in the federal courts has more than tripled in the past decade, putting an extraordinary burden on already overworked judges, Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist said in an end-of-the year report on the federal judiciary being released today. "From a federal law enforcement perspective, the war on drugs will fail if the judiciary is not given the judgeships necessary to do the job," Rehnquist wrote.
March 13, 1997 |
Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist on Wednesday denied a request by a coalition of 16 Muslim groups to remove a bas-relief of Muhammad from the wall of the courtroom where the U.S. Supreme Court meets, which Muslims complained denigrated their prophet. The 7th century religious leader is shown as one among a pantheon of 18 great lawgivers of history represented on the courtroom walls.
October 9, 2011 |
Justice John Paul Stevens spent 35 years on the Supreme Court writing legal opinions. So it's not surprising his first book, "Five Chiefs," is chock-full of opinions — about where his fellow justices went wrong. For example, Stevens, 91 and retired, describes Bush vs. Gore — the decision that resolved the contentious 2000 presidential election — as the result of a "frivolous" appeal that shouldn't have been granted. That was a "low point" in his tenure on the court, he said in a recent interview.