From his perch across the street from the Capitol, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court John Roberts isn't holding back what he thinks about the fiscal cliff brinksmanship. In his annual year-end report on the federal judiciary, Roberts suggested Congress and the White House be more careful with taxpayer money, CNN reports.
The chief justice said that his branch of the government provided an example of doing much with few resources. The federal judiciary makes do with a budget appropriation of about $7 billion, he wrote, "a mere two-tenths of 1 percent of the United States' total budget of $3.7 trillion."
"Yes," he went on, "for each citizen's tax dollar, only two-tenths of one penny goes toward funding the entire third branch of government!"
Roberts said a prolonged reduction would be extremely hard to overcome. The pending fiscal cliff would "inevitably result in the delay or denial of justice for the people the courts serve."
"I therefore encourage the president and Congress to be especially attentive to the needs of the judicial branch and provide the resources necessary for its operations," said the chief justice.
"Those vital resource needs include the appointment of an adequate number of judges to keep current on pending cases. At the close of 2012, 27 of the existing judicial vacancies are designated as presenting judicial emergencies."