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Senator ERVIN. Has it not been your observation that by putting the prison systems under the control of the Department of Justice, we have, to a large extent, lost sight of the third—and really the most important--function of criminal punishment? That is, the rehabilitation?
Dr. AMADEO. Yes.
Senator ERVIN. And I think one other witness has suggested that as long as the correctional system is under the control of the Department of Justice, it is going to share the smallest part of the budget of that Department.
Dr. AMADEO. Exactly. And that it is a continuation of the prosecutorial attitude.
Senator Ervin. Do you have a question ?
Mr. EDMISTEN. Dr. Amadeo, you are aware, I know, that certain States have independent departments of justice. What does Puerto Rico have?
Dr. AMADEO. We have a centralized—in the office of attorney general as created by the constitution.
Mr. EDMISTEN. Is it independent of the executive branch!
Dr. AMADEO. No. It is just like the past, and has more political influence than here. [General laughter.]
I know that, because my son was Assistant Secretary of Justice. I know there was a lot of politics.
Senator Ervin. I want to thank you for appearing here today. I think you first appeared before the Committee on Constitutional Rights when it was considering the criminal justice bill, and also appeared on several other occasions. You have always been most helpful, and you have always made some very original recommendations.
Dr. AMADEO. Thank you.
The committee will stand in recess until 10 a.m. tomorrow when we will meet at the same place.
[Whereupon, at 12.55 p.m., the subcommittee recessed to reconvene at 10 a.m., March 27, 1974.]
REMOVING POLITICS FROM THE ADMINISTRATION OF
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 27, 1974
Washington, D.C. The subcommittee met, pursuant to recess, at 10:05 a.m., in room 2228, Dirksen Senate Office Building, the Honorable Sam J. Ervin, Jr. (chairman of the subcommittee), presiding.
Present: Senator Ervin.
Also present: Rufus L. Edmisten, chief counsel and staff director; Walker F. Nolan, Jr., counsel; Telma P. Moore, executive assistant; Clair W. Rodgers, Jr., minority counsel; J. L. Pecore, assistant counsel; J. Michael Carpenter, professional staff member; and Prof. Arthur S. Miller, consultant.
Senator ERVIN. The subcommittee will come to order. The counsel will call the first witness.
Mr. EDMISTEN. Mr. Chairman, the subcommittee has the pleasure of having as its first witness the Honorable Arthur J. Goldberg, former Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.
Senator ERVIN. Justice Goldberg, we are delighted to welcome you, as we have in times past. You have been of material help to us on many occasions and we are delighted to have you here. .
STATEMENT OF HON. ARTHUR J. GOLDBERG, FORMER JUSTICE OF
THE U.S. SUPREME COURT
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF ARTHUR J. GOLDBERG
Arthur J. Goldberg has served as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, the Permanent Representative of the United States to the United Nations with the rank of Ambassador, and Secretary of Labor.
Justice Goldberg was born in Chicago, Illinois, on August 8, 1908, the son of Joseph and Rebecca Goldberg.
He received his elementary education in Chicago Public Schools and was graduated from Benjamin Harrison High School in 1924. Mr. Goldberg attended Crane Junior College, a branch of the City College of Chicago. He received the Bachelor of Science in Law degree in 1929 and Doctor of Jurisprudence in 1930 from Northwestern University. He was Editor-in-Chief of the Illinois Law Review.
In 1929, Mr. Goldberg was admitted to practice before the Illinois bar. He qualified for practice before the Supreme Court of the United States in 1937.
Mr. Goldberg was General Counsel of the Congress of Industrial Organizations, (CIO) 1948–1955, and United Steel Workers of America, 1948–1961. He was Special Counsel for the AFL-CIO, 1955–1961. He also was Legal Advisor to several international unions.
During World War II he served as Special Assistant with the rank of Captain and Major with the Office of Strategic Services.
He is author of articles in American legal publications and journals of opinion, and the author of several books, including “AFL-CIO: Labor United,” "The Defenses of Freedom: The Public Papers of Arthur J. Goldberg," and "Equal Justice: The Warren Era of the Supreme Court."
Mr. Goldberg married Dorothy Kurgans, an artist, in 1931. They have two children, a daughter, Mrs. Barbara Cramer, a social worker in Chicago, and a son, Robert M. Goldberg, an Alaska lawyer.
Justice Goldberg is now practicing law in Washington, D. C., and is also a University Professor of Law and Diplomacy at American University, Washington, D. C.
Mr. GOLDBERG. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen and ladies, I am very glad to respond to your invitation, Mr. Chairman, and the invitation of members of this distinguished subcommittee to present my views on the important subject of insuring that the Department of Justice is insulated from political control by the executive branch of the Government.
To this end, Mr. Chairman, you have submitted your bill, S. 2803, to establish the Department of Justice as an independent agency of Government.
In the invitation, you have also asked me to comment on Senator Cranston's bill, which would create a commission to study the question of the establishment of a Permanent Special Prosecutor in the Federal scheme.
I have read the statement that you made in introducing the bill, Mr. Chairman, and you made it clear that the purpose of these hearings is to explore the entire subject area and "to receive diverse views" relating thereto.
I want to commend you, Mr. Chairman, and members of your subcommittee for focusing attention on the pressing need to insulate the Department of Justice from political control and to make it truly independent. That it is desirable to do so is scarcely arguable, in light of recent and highly deplorable disclosures of influence "peddling” affecting the operation of the Department of Justice.
I am entirely in agreement with the stated goal of S. 2803 to divorce politics from the administration and operations of the Department of Justice. Justice and politics do not mix and should not mix.
The hearings before the Senate Watergate Committee, ably chaired by you, Mr. Chairman, contain sufficient sworn and uncontradicted testimony clearly demonstrating the need of reform to insulate the Department of Justice from political influence.
I hasten to add that in saying this, I in no way wish to express any opinion as to the actions of former Attorney General Mitchell, who is now on trial for certain offenses and under indictment for others; or the actions of other high ranking governmental officials who have been indicted for various offenses, including obstruction of justice. They, like all citizens charged with criminal offenses, are entitled to the presumption of innocence. It would be entirely inappropriate for me to comment on the substance of the charges which are now sub judice.
The essence of S. 2803 is to make the Department of Justice the equivalent of an independent regulatory agency of the Government. While agreeing with the objective of insulating the Department from politics, I am not in agreement that this can best be done by converting the Department of Justice into such an agency. My reasons are these:
In my judicial experience, as well as my experience at the bar, I have concluded that the so-called independent regulatory agencies, with some notable exceptions, are not always free from political influence, and that some tend to become captive to the interests which they are by law mandated to regulate. I say this with great regret.
I was a strong supporter of administrative agencies at their inception. I now lean to the view that the investigative, administrative, and judicial functions of these agencies should be separateda view, Mr. Chairman, which in candor, I should say, I one time opposed.
In the case of the Department of Justice, I would not, for example, like to see the Antitrust Division of the Department part of an independent agency, charged with the enforcement of the antitrust laws. While the Antitrust Division is not perfect—no department of government is—it nevertheless has an outstanding record of able and vigorous enforcement of the antitrust laws. would not like to see this Division captive of the interests the Division is designed to oversee.
It is my conviction that the commendable goal of your bill, namely, insuring the independence of the Department of Justice, can best be achieved by a series of other measures. Some of these measures require implementing legislation; others do not. If adopted, they could effectively achieve the goal which the bills now under consideration seek, without changing the traditional and paramount role of the Department of Justice in the executive branch. The measures I would propose are as follows:
(1) The Attorney General, the Deputy and Assistant Attorneys General, and the U.S. attorneys should be precluded from engaging in any type of political activity while in office. These officials should take no part in election campaigns or financing, but rather should be required to devote their undivided energies to the administration of justice with impartiality and without political pressures.
By the very nature of the cases and issues dealt with by officials of the Justice Department, a great deal of necessary prosecutorial discretion is vested in their offices. This being the case, they should, like Caesar's wife, be above suspicion. Like judges, these officials of the Department-of whatever rank-should conduct the affairs of the Department in such a way as to avoid not only actual impropriety, but the very appearance of impropriety. This standard is the established test for the conduct of judges.
Divorcing the Attorney General and the other high ranking officers in the Justice Department, subject to senatorial confirmation, from political influence could be accomplished, it seems to me, in any one of several ways.
Without enacting any new legislation, the Senate could exact commitments of political disengagement and involvement from nominees for these offices as a condition of senatorial consent to their appointment. The efficacy of this method is demonstrated by the resignations of former Attorney General Richardson and Deputy Attorney General Ruckelshaus who, having made commitments to the Senate Judiciary Committee, felt duty bound to honor these commitments when asked to violate them by aides speaking for the President.
I have the highest commendation and regard for these distinguished men who lived up to commitments made to the Senate of the United States.
Another method would be for the top officials in the Department of Justice to adopt a self-denying ordinance against mixing in politics. Traditionally, the Secretaries of State and Defense avoid political entanglements while in office. Considering the nature of the responsibilities of their offices, there is every reason for the Attorney General and his high ranking colleagues to do likewise.
A third method, which would require implementing legislation, would be to enact a new statute or to amend the Hatch Act to prohibit the Attorney General and all other Presidential appointees in the Justice Department from engaging in political activity, just as other Federal employees are now prohibited. Whatever may be said concerning the constitutionality of such a statutory prohibition when applied to low ranking government employees, it is my view that the compelling necessity for the impartial administration of justice would sustain a carefully drafted statute prohibiting political involvements by high ranking officials of the Department of Justice.
(2) The attorneys employed by the Justice Department who are below the rank of Presidential appointees, but who comprise the solid core of the Department's operations, should be placed under the Civil Service Act. Currently these attorneys are not covered by the act. This measure would require new legislation, but the job security and other safeguards of the Civil Service Act would serve to strengthen the independence of the professional cadres of the Justice Department.
În making this proposal, I think it only proper to pay tribute to the measure of independence already displayed by the Department's career service, notwithstanding their current" lack of civil service protection. However, civil service status would afford additional protection against political influence and promote independent decisionmaking.
(3) The office of White House Counsel to the President should be eliminated. With an Attorney General and Department of Justice disentangled from politics, it would seem to me that there is no good reason for the continued existence of the office and staff of the White House Counsel an office unknown until President Franklin D. Roosevelt's administration. The Attorney General and the Department of Justice should serve as White House Counsel. There are great advantages in making this necessary reform.
The Attorney General and his staff are subject, as all Cabinet officials are or should be, to justifying and reporting their conduct