Date: January 12, 2006
SPECTER: Thank you, Senator Kennedy.
Senator Hatch has stated an interest in regaining some of his reserved time.
HATCH: Well, just shortly.
We appreciate the efforts that you made. We appreciate what the Bar Association is doing. And we appreciate what you've done in this particular case as well.
Now, you're aware that -- and, frankly, he did state right off the bat, early in his testimony, that he had made a mistake with regard to the Vanguard matter.
On the other hand, are you aware that, not only did he recuse himself once he realized he'd made a mistake, but he asked the succeeding panel to retry the case. Are you aware of that?
HATCH: Was that an appropriate thing to do?
PAYTON: He asked that the chief judge identify a new panel. And I think that was the appropriate thing to do.
HATCH: And that's what an honest, decent judge would do, isn't it?
PAYTON: Sure, of course.
HATCH: You're all aware of 28 USC, the U.S. Code statute on this -- am I correct?
HATCH: I mean, that statute defines a financial interest for the courts that says, financial interest means ownership of a legal or equitable interest, however small or a relationship as director, adviser or other active participant in the affairs of the party except that ownership in a mutual or common investment fund that holds securities is not a, quote, "financial interest," unquote, in such securities, unless the judge participates in the management of the fund.
HATCH: Are you aware of that? Now, did he participate in the management of the fund?
PAYTON: The answer is no.
HATCH: Then, if he didn't participate in the management of the fund, would he have had, under normal circumstances, to recuse himself?
PAYTON: Well, I think the normal circumstances is, you know, amplified by the representation to this committee, which he acknowledged, independent of the obligation that you're talking about, would have caused him to not want these cases to come before him.
HATCH: Right. But he made it clear that once he did realize that there was a mistake, even though he did not, according to this U.S. Code, which is the basis, did not have to recuse himself, he did so because he had said in his statement that he would?
HATCH: And you knew that? And so, I take it you don't find any real fault in the way he handled the Vanguard matter?
PAYTON: That's correct.
HATCH: That's correct?
PAYTON: That is correct.
HATCH: Thank you so much.
SPECTER: Thank you, Senator Hatch.