Proposal for New Federal Judge for Idaho...the First in 56 Years


On Tuesday, Citydesk paid a rare visit to the U.S. Courthouse (in preparation for Thursday's coverage of the MDL panel, examining lawsuits surround the BP Gulf oil disaster), and we were interrupted when an official in Chief Judge Lynn Winmill's office said she had to take a phone call from Rep. Walt Minnick's office.

Today (Wednesday), we know what that phone call was all about. Minnick has announced his legislation to seek a new U.S. District Judge for Idaho, which could be the first appointment in more than a half century.

"Five and a half decades have passed since we last saw an increase in the number of federal district judges in Idaho," said Winmill.

It's estimated that between 2000 and 2009, federal criminal cases in Idaho have increased 177 percent.

Minnick said he will introduce legislation, along with Rep. Mike Simpson, directing President Barack Obama to appoint a third District Judge for Idaho.