Message from the Federal Bar Association

Message from the Federal Bar Association on the FBA’s Campaign to Fill Federal Judicial Vacancies

We call upon all FBA chapters and members to participate in an FBA nationwide advocacy campaign to ease the judicial vacancy crisis currently afflicting the federal courts.

The FBA Board of Directors has identified the vacancy crisis as a real problem of concern. The President and the Congress clearly need to act more vigorously in responsibly nominating and confirming nominees to the federal appellate and district courts. A fact sheet on the judicial vacancy crisis has been provided.

The FBA, as a matter of policy, takes no position on the credentials or qualifications of specific nominees to the federal bench. But as pointed out in recent correspondence to the President and Congressional leaders, judicial vacancies undermine the capacity of the circuit and district courts to function at their authorized strength. This creates harmful delay in the prompt and effective administration of justice.

If vacancies exist in your respective circuit and/or district courts, please write your Senators to express your concern and to ask for their help in correcting the situation. Please also encourage your chapter members to get involved and write letters to the same Senators on their firm or personal letterhead. To assist your chapter and chapter member letter-writing efforts, model letters for use by FBA chapters and members are available in the resources section below. Please adapt the model letter to your state’s situation vis-à-vis the respective vacancies at the circuit and district level.

The Federal Judiciary website provides summary and specific data on current circuit and district vacancies, including judicial emergencies you can insert into your letters.

Please advise the chief judge of your district court and circuit courts of your actions and coordinate as appropriate.  Also please send blind copies of your letters to the chief judges of your respective district and circuit courts, as well as FBA Executive Director Karen Silberman.

Thank you for your chapter and your membership’s participation in this important advocacy initiative.