For Immediate Release
Media Contact: Bob Cooper
(208) 334-4112

Date: October 5, 2004

STATEMENT OF ATTORNEY GENERAL WASDEN

Regarding House of Representatives action on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

Today's action by the United States House of Representatives, thanks to Congressman Simpson, is the most significant advancement of the Ninth Circuit issue yet. Idaho's entire congressional delegation has worked on this issue for several years. A Ninth Circuit split would be a tremendous improvement in the quality of justice provided to Idaho's citizens.

For Idaho citizens, justice in the Ninth Circuit is unacceptably slow. The average circuit court takes ten and one-half months to resolve an appeal. In the Ninth Circuit, justice is 33% slower, with an appeal taking 14 months to resolve.

The Ninth Circuit, which is one of twelve federal appellate circuit courts, has a massive caseload. It accounts for more than one-fifth (21.6%) of all federal appeals. Last year, its caseload increased by 31.4%. It will get worse if the Ninth Circuit is not split.

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