The American Bar Association holds its 2022 Annual Meeting Aug. 3 through 9 in Chicago and features the award of the ABA Medal to retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer. Additionally, more than 30 measures are on the agenda of the House of Delegates, which concludes the session Aug. 8-9.
Justice Breyer, who retired from the Supreme Court on June 30, will receive the association’s highest honor at the General Assembly on Saturday afternoon. He will also become the new chair of the ABA Rule of Law Initiative board after the Annual Meeting.
The HOD, as the ABA policy-making body is known, encompasses 583 delegates from ABA entities and state, local and specialty bar associations. Its current slate of resolutions was set weeks in advance, although late measures could be added to reflect proposed ABA policy responses to national developments during the past few weeks.
Two resolutions now on the HOD agenda seek to make it more difficult to buy guns in certain situations.
One resolution urges the repeal of the federal law, also known as the “Charleston Loophole,” which allows for the sale of a firearm to be finalized after three business days, even if the required background check has not been completed. Another urges that governments adopt legislation to close the so-called “boyfriend” loophole that permits access to guns by physically abusive ex-boyfriends and stalkers with previous convictions or restraining orders. The federal bipartisan gun control bill signed by President Joe Biden on June 25 closed the “boyfriend” loophole but not the “Charleston Loophole.”
Three additional resolutions seek to address overpopulated jails and prisons. The measures provide standards for defendant diversion programs to minimize over-criminalization and incarceration; offer principles to tackle mass incarceration; and recommend that governmental entities allow reviews of sentences for those serving more than 10 years.
Other resolutions target election integrity, diversity and inclusion in legal education and privacy issues, among others.
- Recent ABA stories related to retired Justice Breyer:
- ABA Medal and past honorees
- ABA House of Delegates and list of resolutions (as of July 19)
- ABA Journal: