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Congressional leaders on Tuesday told the Judicial Conference that increasing judicial salaries is still a “serious and pressing issue” that deserves the attention of Congress even at a time of economic woe for the nation.

The sentiment among legislators at the conference was generally positive about the need for judicial pay increases, though several also said “we have to get our national economic house in order,” said Anthony Scirica, chief judge of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The judiciary has been trying without success for years to win salary increases. A small cost-of-living increase was approved last year, and a salary hike made some headway in committee, but was not enacted.

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