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IN DRAFTING the new rules for civil procedure in the federal courts
the Supreme Court's committee has dealt sparingly with the law of
evidence. Rule 44 as set out in the committee's report is designed primarily
to clear up the confusion which has existed heretofore with regard
to the applicability of state rules of evidence in the federal courts and
to avoid any further confusion which might arise from the union of
law and equity under the new rules. Of the several possible methods of
treating these problems, that chosen by the committee is, it is submitted,
best adapted to the situation. A thorough-going revision of the law of
evidence resulting in a code which is substantially complete probably is
not desirable in any case, certainly not in this. A single general rule,
such as one requiring conformity to state law on all matters of evidence,
would aid in alleviating the confusion; but to adopt a rule of this
nature would be to lose an excellent opportunity for eliminating some
of the worst features of the present law of evidence. The alternative
followed by the committee is to propose a few rules for specific instances
and a general one to cover the great body of evidence questions.

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civil actions, Supreme Court