By Dennis Crouch
Three of the Federal Circuit’s twelve judicial positions are currently open. Those slots were previously held by Judges Michel, Linn, and Bryson. Judge Michel’s slot has been unfilled since his 2010 retirement, but the nominee, Richard Taranto, appears to be finally moving forward. In a voice vote today, the Senate Judiciary committee approved Taranto’s nomination. See http://www.judiciary.senate.gov. The nomination must still be confirmed by the Senate as a whole. Judges Linn and Bryson vacated their positions in November 2012 and January 2013 respectively. President Obama has not yet offered any nominees to fill those slots, although I hear that they are in the works. (If you have not yet heard from the White House, then you are not getting nominated. Sorry.)
For more reading, look at the recent NLJ editorial by Professor Carl Tobias: Circuit court confirmations an imperative.