Federal Courts, Empty Benches: The Wednesday Vacancy Count 7/18/2012
- For a District by District break down, see: Federal Court Vacancy Warning System
The current vacancy warning level for the U.S. District courts is set at Blue. There was one new confirmation and two new vacancies this week. That leaves the final tally at 75 vacancies or approximately 8.6% of the total Article III posts currently unfilled. The vacancy information for the various court levels is as follows:
|(Numbers indicate % of seats vacant.)|
|More than 40%|
|Supreme Court||0% or no vacancies|
|Appeals Courts||7.3% or 13 vacancies|
|District Courts||9.1% or 62 vacancies|
There are currently 9 Supreme Court posts, 179 appellate court posts and 680 district court posts for a total of 868 Article III judges. This count includes four temporary posts, one each in the Northern District of Alabama, District of Arizona, Southern District of Florida and the Central District of California. This also includes a shared post between the two Missouri districts and counts it as two posts with separate vacancies.
The new weekly map feature will be updated every week and posted here and on the vacancy warning level analysis page.
District of New Jersey
On July 16, 2012 the United States Senate confirmed Kevin McNulty to an Article III post for the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey with a vote of 91-3. McNulty was originally appointed on December 16, 2011, by Barack Obama to the seat vacated by Garrett Brown. At the time of appointment, McNulty was a Director at Gibbons P.C. of Newark. He was rated Unanimously Well Qualified by the American Bar Association. He had a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on March 14, 2012 and you can find his Committee Questionnaire Available Here and his Questions for the Record Available Here. The confirmation fills one of two vacancies on the court of seventeen, lowering the vacancy warning level from Yellow to Blue.
Eastern District of Pennsylvania
On July 13, 2012 Michael Baylson assumed senior status for the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania after serving on the court for 10 years. He joined the court in 2002 after an appointment from George W. Bush. Before being nominated to the federal bench in 2002, Baylson was a private practice attorney in Pennsylvania. Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Baylson graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with his Bachelor's Degree in 1961 and with his Law Degree in 1964. Baylson's transition creates the sixth vacancy on the court of twenty-two, raising the vacancy warning level from Yellow to Orange.
On July 15, 2012 James L. Edmondson assumed senior status for the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit after serving on the court for 26 years. He joined the court in 1986 after an appointment from Ronald Reagan. He served as chief judge from 2002-2009. Before being nominated to the federal bench, Edmondson was a private practice attorney in Georgia and an instructor at the University of Georgia School of Law. Born in Jasper, Georgia, Edmondson graduated from Emory University with his Bachelor's degree in 1968 and later from University of Georgia School of Law with his Juris Doctor degree in 1971. Edmonsdon received a Master's of Laws degree in Judicial Process, L.L.M., from the University of Virginia in 1990. Edmonsdon's transition creates the second vacancy on the court of twelve, raising the vacancy warning level from Blue to Yellow.
Court of International Trade
On July 12, 2012 President Barack Obama nominated Mark A. Barnett to the United States Court of International Trade to fill the vacancy left by Judith Barzilay.  Mark A. Barnett currently serves as the Deputy Chief Counsel in the Office of Chief Counsel for Import Administration at the United States Department of Commerce. Barnett attended Dickinson College, earning his B.A. magna cum laude in 1985. He went on to earn his J.D. in 1988 from University of Michigan Law School. Obama commented on the nomination, stating, "I am proud to nominate this outstanding candidate to serve on the United States Court of International Trade. Mr. Barnett has a long and distinguished record of service, and I am confident he will serve on the court with distinction." The nomination would fill one of two vacancies on the court of nine. With no other pending appointments, the vacancy warning level of the court is set at Yellow. While the United States Court of International Trade is an Article III Court it is not included in our vacancy count and does not have an affect on the overall count.
- ↑ 112th Congress Confirmations
- ↑ United States Periodic Press Gallery
- ↑ 112th Congress Nomination Materials
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 US Courts Current judicial vacancies
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Judge Michael Baylson FJC Bio
- ↑ "Presidential Nominations Sent to the Senate" 7/12/2012
- ↑ "President Obama Nominates Mark A. Barnett to Serve on the U.S. Court of International Trade" 7/12/2012
|This article was written by Joshua Meyer-Gutbrod, an Assistant Staff Writer for the Federal Courts Project on Judgepedia. He can be reached at joshua.meyer-gutbrod.|