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The following is a statement released by Richard Burbidge, President of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers.

The International Academy of Trial Lawyers expressly and unequivocally condemns attacks on the independence of our judiciary and the Rule of Law, two cornerstones of our democracy.  Judges are ethically prevented from making public remarks about cases pending before them and must rely upon others to protect the judiciary from inappropriate and disrespectful criticism.  Lawyers have a special responsibility in defending the Rule of Law and the independence of our judiciary, and the protection and defense of those principles are integral to this Academy and its work.  

The recent attack upon United States District Court Judge James Robart shows disrespect for our judiciary, the Rule of Law, and a system which has existed for almost 250 years.  Judge Robart is not a “so-called judge.” Judge Robart, nominated by then-President George W. Bush, was unanimously confirmed by the Senate in 2004 and has served our nation since his confirmation.  Like the President of the United States, Judge Robart is entitled to the respect afforded a person in his position and the mutual respect upon which our government was founded.

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