January 26, 2019

Statement of Bob Carlson, ABA president Re: Reopening of the federal government

LAS VEGAS, Jan. 26, 2019 — The American Bar Association is encouraged by the agreement between congress and the president to reopen the federal government. The uncertainty and anxiety caused by the shutdown impaired our entire justice system, from law enforcement to public defenders to prosecutors and federal courts.

Immigration courts, already experiencing a backlog of more than 800,000 cases, were forced to cancel tens of thousands of hearings during the shutdown. As a result, individuals who have waited years for a resolution of their case may move to the back of the docket, further delaying their access to justice.

The ABA calls on our elected leaders to come to a resolution of their differences over the next three weeks to avoid another shutdown. Due process and a fair justice system depend on it.

With more than 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is one of the largest voluntary professional membership organizations in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law. View our privacy statement online. Follow the latest ABA news at www.americanbar.org/news and on Twitter @ABANews.