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President Bush on Thursday nominated Paul S. Diamond to the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia, withdrawing his earlier pick for the job after she drew opposition in the Senate.

If confirmed by the Senate, Diamond, a federal district judge in eastern Pennsylvania since 2004, would fill one of two open seats on the federal appellate bench, which covers Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey and the Virgin Islands.

Bush withdrew his nomination of Gene E.K. Pratter after she was opposed by some lawmakers for her conservative judicial views.

If Diamond succeeds in being elevated to the appellate court, that will leave a total of four vacancies on the Eastern District of the Pennsylvania bench.

To fill those, Bush nominated Bucks County Common Pleas Judge Mitchell Goldberg, Philadelphia Common Pleas President Judge C. Darnell Jones II, Philadelphia attorney Carolyn Short and Philadelphia criminal defense attorney Joel H. Slomsky.

Diamond, 55, is a native of Brooklyn, N.Y. He went to Columbia University in the 1970s and earned his law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 1977.

He has worked as a former assistant district attorney, a law clerk at the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, a partner in two law firms and as an adjunct professor at Temple University's Beasley School of Law in Philadelphia.


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