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The Boston Globe


System feels strain as a US judgeship sits empty

Solution sought for Springfield

US District Court Judge Michael A. Ponsor thought he was giving decision-makers in Washington plenty of time when he wrote to President Obama on July 23, 2010, informing him he would be stepping down as a full-time judge effective Aug. 15, 2011, more than a year later.

“It is my hope that this early notice will help facilitate the appointment of my successor,” wrote Ponsor, the only judge regularly assigned to the federal court in Springfield. He added, “An extended vacancy would cause real hardship to litigants here and risk compromising the administration of justice for the people of Western Massachusetts.”

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