Press Releases

Simpson Advocates for Third Federal Judge in Idaho

Simpson, Fulcher introduce bill to increase the number of district judges

Washington, D.C. – Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson introduced legislation last week to address the federal judicial crisis in Idaho.  H.R. 214 allows the President to appoint one additional federal district judge for the district of Idaho, increasing the number of district judges to three.  Idaho Congressman Russ Fulcher is a cosponsor of the bill.

“As the legal community in Idaho well knows, the state of Idaho is facing a federal judicial crisis,” said Simpson.  “We are one of just three states in the nation with only two federal judge seats for the entire state.  This means our federal judges have an extraordinary caseload and high number of weighted filings per judgeship.  As we all know, justice delayed is justice denied, and it is beyond time to authorize another judgeship for Idaho.”

The federal district of Idaho has had just two federal district judges since 1954, when the population of the state was at 600,000.  It is now at 1.7 million and growing, and as Idaho’s population grows, so does the number of court cases.  As a result, the nonpartisan Judicial Conference of the United States has formally recommend that Congress authorize one new permanent district judge in Idaho consistently since 2003.

“I have long advocated for adding an additional judgeship in Idaho because the need is great,” added Simpson. “Idahoans deserve a fair and efficient federal court system, and this bill would go a long way towards ensuring their Constitutional access to justice.  I am pleased that Congressman Fulcher has already joined me in this effort.”

“This initiative is a great way to start the new Congress, working alongside my fellow Idahoan, Congressman Simpson, to alleviate our state’s judicial backlog,” said Fulcher. “Appointing an additional judge will help to lessen the growing backlog of cases, deliver quicker service to our constituents, and make our judicial system more efficient.  This shortage has faced Idaho for far too long, and I am pleased to make this effort one of my first actions in Congress.”

H.R. 214 has been referred to the House Judiciary Committee for further consideration.