A House panel on Thursday held a hearing on possibly breaking up the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which has dismissed the travel ban order of the Trump administration.
Three of the 9th Circuit judges – Chief Judge Sidney Thomas, Judge Alex Kozinski and Judge Carlos Bea – provided their testimony before House Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet and, as expected, were resistant of any moves to split the court.
The Daily Caller reports:
The subcommittee’s chairman, Republican Rep. Darrell Issa, said the court has become too unwieldy to operate efficiently. At 12,000 cases, the court hears twice as many appeals as the next largest circuit court per year. The court also has the largest geographic jurisdiction in the country, running as far north as the Arctic Circle and as far south as Arizona’s Grand Canyon. Fully one-fifth of the country’s population sits in the 9th Circuit. As such, the court’s massive docket generates lengthy turnaround times in decisions and can make access to the courts challenging for average citizens.
Vanderbilt University Law School professor Brian Fitzpatrick testified to the subcommittee saying that he favors splitting the court, arguing that as the number of judges grows, the chances of appointing ideological extremists or “activist” placed on appeals panels together increases.
The Senate is also studying a similar legislation to split up the court, the Daily Caller said
A Fox News report said that five 9th Circuit judges, all Republican appointees, have broken ranks with their colleagues and expressed support for the legality of President Trump’s original travel ban.