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Mr. BREGEL. Well, from my own personal knowledge, it came about as described by Judge Soper, and the job he was given, of course, was, as Judge Soper mentioned, a dirty job. But it was fulfilled capably and an honor to Mr. Sobeloff.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Are you familiar with his reputation for integrity and ability as a lawyer?
Mr. BREGEL. It is of the highest.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Thank you very much.
Now, Mr. Rome.
STATEMENT OF H. PAUL ROME, CHAIRMAN, JUDICIARY COMMITTEE, BALTIMORE CITY BAR ASSOCIATION
Senator O'MAHONEY. Mr. Rome, you are the chairman of the judiciary committee of the Baltimore City Bar Association? Mr. ROME. That is right, sir.
Senator O'MAHONEY. All right, sir.
Mr. ROME. When the appointment of Judge Sobeloff was first announced, our committee considered the appointment, and we were of the opinion that we couldn't find a better selection that Judge Sobeloff.
We thought we were very fortunate to have a man of his caliber and his integrity to grace the bench of the fourth circuit, and the committee so went on record, and the report of the judiciary committee was approved unanimously by the executive committee of the Bar Association of Baltimore City.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Were any objections raised at this meeting? Mr. ROME. None whatsoever, sir.
Senator WATKINS. Did you know of these charges that had been made of some misconduct, conflict of interest, with respect to the Baltimore Trust Co. ?
Mr. ROME. Yes, sir.
Senator WATKINS. You had all that in mind when you made this recommendation?
Mr. ROME. Yes, sir.
And just recently, at a stated meeting of the Bar Association of Baltimore City which was held, I think, on the 16th of April, I introduced a resolution at the meeting of the association, which was an open meeting, and the resolution was unanimously passed.
I would like to put that into the record as it appears in the Daily Record of Baltimore City, a legal paper, dated April 19, 1956. Senator O'MAHONEY. It will be made a part of the record. (The document referred to is as follows:)
RESOLUTION OF THE BAR ASSOCIATION OF BALTIMORE CITY REQUESTING THE IMMEDIATE CONFIRMATION OF HON. SIMON E. SOBELOFF AS ASSOCIATE JUDGE OF THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUIT
Unanimously adopted at the regular stated meeting of the Bar Association on April 17, 1956
Whereas the business of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit is of great importance and the cases pending therein are of great complexity and demand the full resources of full-time judges; and
Whereas Hon. Morris A. Soper, one of the judges of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, requested qualified retirement almost a year ago, and Hon. Armistead M. Dobie, also an associate judge of the United States
Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, has more recently likewise requested qualified retirement, leaving Chief Judge John J. Parker as the only judge of the said court who is presently sitting in active service status; and
Whereas Hon. Simon E. Sobeloff, Solicitor General of the United States, was nominated by the President of the United States on July 15, 1955, as associate judge of the said court; and
Whereas Chief Judge John J. Parker, of said court has, on two occasions, subsequent to the said nomination, called the attention of the Judiciary Committee of the United States Senate to the pressing need for manning the said court with a full working complement of judges and, to that end, has urged the immediate confirmation of General Sobeloff's appointment; and
Whereas the nomination of General Sobeloff has been pending for more than 9 months, and the failure to take action thereon is unfair to the court, to the attorneys that practice therein, and to the litigants, as well as to General Sobeloff; and
Whereas, in the opinion of this association, there is no doubt as to the eminent qualifications of General Sobeloff, by reason of his training, experience, and temperament, to fill, with distinction, the position to which he has been nominated, and his said qualifications have been recognized by the unanimous approval of his appointment by the judiciary committees of this association and the Maryland State Bar Association: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Bar Association of Baltimore City, That the association hereby requests the Judiciary Committee of the United States Senate to take immediate action to consider and report favorably the nomination of Hon. Simon E. Sobeloff as associate judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit; and be it further
Resolved, That a copy of this resolution be mailed, by the secretary of this association, to the chairman and each member of the Judiciary Committee of the United States Senate, and to Senators John Marshall Butler and J. Glenn Beall, of Maryland.
Mr. ROME. In addition to that, sir
Senator O'MAHONEY. Will you mark it, please, Mr. Rome?
Mr. ROME. I have it already marked.
Senator O'MAHONEY. It is already marked?
Mr. ROME. Yes, sir.
Senator O'MAHONEY. I was looking on the wrong page.
Mr. ROME. It is already marked, sir. Don't let the color fool you.
In addition to that, sir, I would like to put into the record a copy of the Evening Sun of Baltimore City, dated April 24, 1956, which refers to this particular hearing that we are holding today, and refers to the resolution, and it goes on to state the qualifications of Judge Sobeloff, sir.
Senator O'MAHONEY. It may be received.
(The document referred to is as follows:)
A HEARING AT LAST
In mid-July of last year, the President nominated Solicitor General Simon E. Sobeloff, of Baltimore, to be a judge of the Circuit Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. The nomination has been held up in the Senate Judiciary Committee ever since, apparently because southern Senators on that committee objected to Mr. Sobeloff's action in arguing the school segregation cases for the Government before the Supreme Court.
Now Senator O'Mahoney, chairman of the subcommittee before which the nomination has been pending, has announced that a hearing will be held on May 3. This is a welcome break in an inexcusable blockade. It is welcome because Mr. Sobeloff has had a distinguished career and deserves better of the committee than he has up to now received. It is welcome because Judge Morris A. Soper, whose place Mr. Sobeloff would take, is in qualified retirement and his successor is badly needed for service on the circuit court.
The Baltimore Bar Association recognized the importance of this situation last week and passed resolutions urging immediate and favorable action on the
Sobeloff nomination. Whether this prompted the subcommittee to call the hearing now scheduled we do not know, but it may well have been taken into account. It could well be taken into account by Senators Butler and Beall, especially the former, who though not a member of the subcommittee is a member of the Judiciary Committee and its thus in a favorable position from which to support the bar association's plea. Mr. Sobeloff has impressive qualifications for the judgeship. His nomination ought to be confirmed without further delay.
Mr. ROME. For me to add anything else to what has been said by Judge Soper and Judge Oppenheimer and Mr. Bergel, and the others to follow, would certainly be superfluous. The record speaks for itself, sir.
We are wholeheartedly in favor of the appointment of judge Sobeloff.
Senator O'MAHONEY. You have heard the question I have addressed to other witnesses.
Mr. ROME. And to that question, my answer is that we known nothing against the appointment, and the only thing we can speak of is in the highest and most glowing terms of the appointment.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Thank you very much, Mr. Rome.
Mr. Bernard J. Flynn?
STATEMENT OF BERNARD J. FLYNN, FORMER UNITED STATES ATTORNEY, AND CHAIRMAN, COMMITTEE ON JUDICIAL APPOINTMENTS, MARYLAND STATE BAR ASSOCIATION
Senator O'MAHONEY. Mr. Flynn, will you identify yourself for the record?
Mr. FLYNN. I am Bernard J. Flynn. I am the chairman of the committee of the Maryland State Bar Association for Federal judicial apppointments. I am a former United States attorney of Maryland.
First of all I want to say a word about Mr. Sobeloff as United States attorney, as I succeeded him in that office.
Senator O'MAHONEY. How long have you known him?
Mr. FLYNN. I have known him, not as long as Judge Soper, I suppose, but I guess we have known each other ever since we met at the bar, as much as 30 years, and let it go at that, Senator.
Succeeding Mr. Sobeloff as United States attorney, I want to say that nothing has ever come to my attention in connection with his performance of his duties as United States attorney that could in any way reflect upon him as a lawyer, as a judge, or as a citizen of Maryland.
He conducted the office in a splendid manner, and I was very happy to have him as sort of a guide that I could carry on after.
As to the committee of which I am the chairman, our committee recommends to the bar association or to the Governor, or to the appointing power, a list of people who are, we feel, available, and qualified to hold the office for which they are being suggested.
Mr. Sobeloff has been one of those suggested by our committee when he was made Solicitor General, and he has now also been recommended by our committee as qualified in every possible way to be a judge of the Circuit Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.
I might say, also, that in reference to-before I go into that, Senator,
some time ago the State bar association of Maryland sent to your committee a resolution that was passed at the January meeting of the bar association, which was the last general meeting held, in January, and which was unanimously passed, that Judge Sobeloff should, we felt, be appointed to the circuit court of appeals. And at that time he had been nominated by the President, and was asked that your committee confirm the nomination.
Now, going into the question of the Baltimore Trust, that came to the attention of our committee. I had one member of our committee make as much of an investigation of that matter as could be possibly made.
I might say that there are stacks and stack and stacks of papers in Circuit Court No. 2 of Baltimore City, which would be utterly impossible for anyone to go through. We did make an investigation, and we conferred with the Honorable Eugene O'Dunne, who was the judge in charge of this matter, and which Judge Soper has referred to.
And I want to say that, I am permitted by Judge O'Dunne to state that there was nothing in that matter at all that would bring any criticism whatever on Mr. Sobeloff.
Unfortunately, Judge O'Dunne is not in the best of health, and was not able to get over here today. However, his son is here. And I just want to make it clear that our committee has gone into that matter, and we can merely say we can find nothing in any way that Mr. Sobeloff could be criticized for in his conducting of that litigation. Senator O'MAHONEY. And in making that investigation, you did so in contemplation of presenting testimony to this committee? Mr. FLYNN. That is true, sir.
Senator O'MAHONEY. On the nomination?
Mr. FLYNN. We felt our committee ought to know all about the man we were recommending, and we went into that as thoroughly as was possible to go into under the circumstances.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Was there any evidence of any conflict of interest?
Mr. FLYNN. None in the world, sir, none that we found.
Senator O'MAHONEY. And that is the judgment of the committee of which you are a member?
Mr. FLYNN. That is true, sir.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Is it the view of the bar association you represent?
Mr. FLYNN. Yes, sir; that is true, because of the unanimous adoption of the resolution last January.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Yes.
Do you know of any reason why the nominee should not be confirmed?
Mr. FLYNN. None in the world.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Senator Watkins?
Senator WATKINS. When were you United States district attorney? Mr. FLYNN. 1932 until 1952-1934-52.
Senator WATKINS. As United States district attorney, you would have an opportunity to know what had been done by your predecessor in connection with cases, and the prosecution of them?
Mr. FLYNN. I certainly did, sir.
Senator WATKINS. Did you find anything in the record which would indicate that Judge Sobeloff had been anything but a man who had high regard for his oath of office and his duties as a lawyer?
Mr. FLYNN. I found nothing in any matter that had gone through the office prior to my taking office which was handled by Mr. Sobeloff or his regime which could in any way be criticized by me or anybody else.
Senator WATKINS. Thank you.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Thank you very much.
Mr. Enos Stockbridge?
STATEMENT OF ENOS S. STOCKBRIDGE, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE BALTIMORE CITY BAR ASSOCIATION
Mr. STOCKBRIDGE. Mr. Chairman.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Will you identify yourself?
Mr. STOCKBRIDGE. My name is Enos S. Stockbridge, a member of the firm of Mills & Stockbridge in Baltimore. I am not now connected with the Bar Association of Baltimore City or the State. I have known Mr. Sobeloff
Senator O'MAHONEY. Do you hold any other public position? Mr. STOCKBRIDGE. I hold no public position at the present time. Senator O'MAHONEY. Were you at one time a member of the board of regents of the University of Maryland?
Mr. STOCKBRIDGE. I am now, but I didn't realize that was a public position. I was recently appointed. I haven't gotten my feet wet yet. I have known Mr. Sobeloff
Senator O'MAHONEY. If I may ask you another question. I am reading from Senator Butler's identification of you. He refers to you as the chairman of the Board of Corrections of Maryland. Mr. STOCKBRIDGE. That is correct.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Are there any other official positions that you have forgotten?
Mr. STOCKBRIDGE. Not at the present time. I have had 1 or 2 previously, but those are over and done with, as, for example, I served as chairman of a commission to revise the charter of Baltimore City, which had not been revised for approximately 50 years; and then more recently, Mr. Sobeloff was a member of that commission.
And more recently, I served as vice chairman under Mr. Sobeloff, who was chairman of a committee on the reorganization of the administration of the State of Maryland. Both of those undertakings have been completed and over with.
Senator O'MAHONEY. You are a former president of the Baltimore City Bar Association?
Mr. STOCKBRIDGE. That is correct.
Senator O'MAHONEY. Now you may proceed.
Mr. STOCKBRIDGE. You will pardon my natural modesty, however. I have known Mr. Sobeloff, I can't tell you exactly how long, but at least 40 years, and I think somewhat longer than that, because my first contact that I remember was when he was a clerk in Judge Soper's office when Judge Soper was a member of the supreme bench of Baltimore City.