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In his annual report on the judiciary issued Jan. 1, Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. said the continued failure of Congress to raise judicial salaries had reached the level of a “constitutional crisis.”

The job of selling Congress on the urgency of pay raises will fall in part to James Duff, the mild-mannered new director of the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts. In addition to running the sprawling federal judiciary, Duff’s job includes working with Congress, which appropriates $6 billion each year to make the courts run — and to pay the judges.

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