The U.S. Middle District of Pennsylvania covers 33 counties.
Yet there is no sitting federal judge in the Williamsport federal court house.
The court house sits minutes from a federal prison and is in the heart of an economic community full of new businesses brought on by the natural gas boom.
So there is a clear need for a sitting federal judge, yet none is in place.
U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey, visiting the city last week, said he will push hard to change that.
There are two nominees for two seats on the federal bench, including the one here. Matthew Brann, a Canton attorney, has been nominated for the seat in Williamsport, and Malcahy Mannion, of Scranton, has been nominated for the seat in that city. Both have been confirmed by the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Toomey says both nominees are qualified, but the full Senate has to approve them to get them on the federal bench.
In an age when partisanship is too dominant in Washington, this should not be a partisan issue. The Middle District needs a judge in Williamsport to better execute the federal legal needs of a 33-county area.
Period. End of story.
We would hope the judgeship is approved during the Senate's fall session.
There will be lots of important items put off due to the upcoming election, but this shouldn't be one of them.