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Michael Wallace, the Mississippi lawyer nominated for a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit, says he’s not waiting around any longer for the job. Wallace withdrew his bid last week, some three months after his hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee and less than a year since he was nominated. Wallace, in a letter to the White House, said it was clear that incoming committee chairman Patrick Leahy’s (D-Vt.) call for “consensus nominees” meant he was not going to call Wallace up for a vote. Of course, there was also that troublesome problem with the American Bar Association, which gave him a unanimously unqualified rating and, without directly saying so, accused Wallace of being a racist, a charge he denies. “I’ve been practicing law for 30 years. My family’s been in law for three generations. I love what I do,” he says, adding that he will continue his litigation practice at Phelps Dunbar in Jackson, Miss. “That’s how politics goes.”
T.R. Goldman can be contacted at [email protected].

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