The United States Judicial Conference yesterday adopted a revised Code of Conduct for federal judgeships taking effect on July 1, 2009.
The revised Code, condensing the original seven rules, or canons, to five and rewording the language into "plainer, clearer English," builds on the dictate of its first canon that judges should uphold the integrity & independence of the judiciary.
The revision of Canon 2, which states that judges should "avoid impropriety and the appearance of impropriety in all activities," for the first time now includes a definition of "appearance of impropriety," stating, "An appearance of impropriety occurs when reasonable minds, with knowledge of all the relevant circumstances disclosed by a reasonable inquiry, would conclude that the judge's honesty, integrity, impartiality, temperament, or fitness to serve as a judge is impaired." [ See Judicial Conference's release ]
Legal Times this morning has more