By Bill O’Boyle - [email protected]

Toomey, Casey continue agreement for federal court vacancies

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    WILKES-BARRE — Pennsylvania U.S. Senators Bob Casey Jr. and Pat Toomey recently announced they will continue their bipartisan judicial agreement to appoint individuals who demonstrate the intelligence, experience and character to serve the state well on the federal bench.

    The senators said they have already succeeded in filling 14 vacancies on federal district courts in Pennsylvania.

    Steve Kelly, of Toomey’s communications staff, said that over the past six years, all 14 of the Toomey/Casey-backed judicial nominees who received a confirmation vote from the entire Senate were confirmed.

    “This is more than any other state besides New York and California,” Kelly said.

    In an emailed news release, Casey and Toomey said they look forward to continuing this bipartisan process under President Donald Trump.

    “I look forward to working with Sen. Toomey again to recommend highly qualified candidates to the federal bench,” Casey said. “The bipartisan process Sen. Toomey and I have engaged in has helped put 14 judges on the federal bench.”

    Casey said filling these judicial vacancies is critical for the administration of justice in Pennsylvania.

    20-member panels

    Casey and Toomey said they will employ the following process to fill vacancies:

    • Separate judicial nomination advisory panels will be established in the Eastern District and Western District of Pennsylvania, where the federal district courts currently have judicial vacancies.

    • These panels will screen applicants for judicial vacancies and submit the names of qualified applicants to the two U.S. senators.

    • Each panel will be made up of 20 members, including two co-chairs. Casey and Toomey will each appoint nine-panel members and one co-chair.

    • Eastern District Panel co-chairs will be: Robert Ross, senior Partner at Ross Feller Casey LLP; John J. Soroko, chairman and CEO at Duane Morris LLP.

    • Western District Panel co-chairs will be: Michael Adams, founder and managing partner at Mike Adams & Associates LLC; Heather S. Heidelbaugh, partner with Leech Tishman.

    • Applicants will be required to complete and submit a questionnaire approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee.

    • Persons interested in being considered for an appointment should email the address corresponding to their district. In the Eastern District: [email protected] and/or [email protected] In the Western District: [email protected] and/or [email protected]

    The deadline for applicants to submit the completed Senate Judiciary questionnaire in both the Eastern and Western District is no later than April 10 at 8 a.m.

    There are currently no vacancies in the Middle District. When vacancies occur, the senators will employ a similar process.




    By Bill O’Boyle

    [email protected]

    Reach Bill O’Boyle at 570-991-6118 or on Twitter @TLBillOBoyle.

    Reach Bill O’Boyle at 570-991-6118 or on Twitter @TLBillOBoyle.