As any judge, lawyer or law student can attest, the rule against hearsay with its plethora of exceptions is probably the most vexing of all the rules of evidence. When the Supreme Court's Proposed Rules of Evidence were first published, it was fairly apparent, with respect to the specific rules governing hearsay, that the Court had intended to remove some of the sting from a few of the more annoying aspects of the rule against hearsay.' In fact, the changes proposed by the Court arguably constituted a first step toward eliminating the rule entirely. The proposed hearsay rules (Federal Rules of Evidence 801-806) broadened and liberalized the number of exceptions whereby hearsay would be admissible. The rationalization for this expansion could be characterized as a bias toward the admission of hearsay whenever the out-of-court statement had been previously subjected to cross-examination, or when there was some substitute for cross-examination which provided the statement with certain indicia of reliability.
Turner, Dennis J.
"Federal Rule of Evidence 804: Will the Real Predecessor-in-Interest Please Stand Up,"
Akron Law Review: Vol. 19:
2, Article 4.
Available at: https://ideaexchange.uakron.edu/akronlawreview/vol19/iss2/4