case. Her professionalism and high ethical standards are well known to this Court. The Court realizes that she, like all of the attorneys in the United States Attorney's Office, must take her clients as she finds them. Rather, the egregious conduct of the defendant crystallizes a recurring problem faced by attorneys in the United States Attorney's Office. Specifically, government clients who fail to abide by the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, fail to obey orders of United States Courts, and commit similar defalcations, all of which give rise to the unpleasant occasion when this Court must, in the interest of justice, use its power to the full extent of the law. The papers filed by the Assistant United States Attorney assigned to this case clearly indicate that every delay and defalcation was caused by, and within, the vast bureaucracy of the Department of Health and Human Services. This Court knows that the holidays did not prevent the defendant and her agents, servants, and employees from performing their duties. The Assistant United States Attorney apparently has done her part, and, in fact, appeared before the Court in an unrelated matter during that time period, in spite of a scheduled vacation.
As far as this case is concerned, when one talks about the poor and disadvantaged, and the need for benefits under Social Security, the Court will not tolerate disobedience of its Orders through admitted bureaucratic delay and lack of cooperation caused by attorneys responsible for a government agency. The conduct of the defendant shows a total lack of regard for human misery and suffering which must be brought to a stop. Poor and disadvantaged people cannot afford the luxury of bureaucratic delay and indifference to human needs.
In addition to the above, it is alleged, in Count III of the Complaint, that the Secretary's Administrative Law Judges are rated "unacceptable" if they decide more than 66-2/3 percent of their cases in favor of social security claimants. This fact should be ventilated and may, in itself, be cause for sanctions and may also constitute a denial of the due process rights of eligible claimants, including the plaintiff herein, although that will await the outcome of this litigation.
On this question the returning members of Congress might want to look into this in connection with their oversight function. If not, this Court may institute an ancillary proceeding to determine the facts in regard to the allegations in Count III of the Complaint. If these allegations are true, with pre-determined judgments being made by insensitive government administrators, then the public has a right to know what the facts are and who is responsible therefor.
It is indeed curious that while writing this memorandum, the Clerk's Office received the administrative record herein together with a purported Answer to the Complaint which shall be lodged with the Clerk and not filed until further hearings on this matter can be ventilated.
An Order consistent with the foregoing will issue of even date herewith.
In light of the accompanying Opinion of even date herewith, and based on the entire record herein, it is by the Court, this 17 day of January, 1984,
ORDERED, that the defendant's Motion For An Enlargement of Time within which to answer the Complaint be, and the same hereby is, denied, but the Administrative Record and the Answer shall be lodged with the Clerk and, not filed, in its offices until further Order of the Court; and it is
FURTHER ORDERED, that a hearing will be held on January 25, 1984, at 2:00 p.m., at which the Court will hear argument as to whether, in the light of the facts which have been established, the decision of the Secretary is supported by substantial evidence; and it is
FURTHER ORDERED, that on January 25, 1984, at 2:00 p.m., the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, or those employees of said Department responsible for this case, including her attorneys, shall show cause why she, or they, should not be held in contempt of this Court for her failure to abide by the Orders of this Court and the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure; and it is
FURTHER ORDERED, that on January 25, 1984, at 2:00 p.m., the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, or those employees of said Department responsible for this case, including her attorneys, shall show cause as to why her, or their, conduct is not so egregious as to cause the Court to enter judgment for the plaintiff pursuant to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure to the effect that all of the allegations contained in the Complaint shall be taken as true; and it is
FURTHER ORDERED, that the defendant's attorneys whose names appear on the answer attempted to be filed herein on January 13, 1984, as "OF COUNSEL", shall personally appear on January 25, 1984, at 2:00 p.m. to show cause why sanctions under 28 U.S.C. Section 1927, or such other relief as may be appropriate in the premises should not be granted.