United States Circuit Judge Thomas Griffith to retire from DC Circuit on September 1, 2020

Trump will get one more vacancy on the DC Circuit, but this will amount to a HOLD and not a GAIN.

United States Circuit Judge Thomas Griffith, appointed by George W. Bush in 2005, will retire outright on September 1, 2020, rather than taking senior status.

While he turned 65 last year, he will satisfy the “Rule of 80” for retirement when he logs 15 years of service on June 29.

It is expected this vacancy will get top priority in the Senate.

Good choice on his part. He gets to enjoy the rest of his life and is assured a Republican leaning judge will replace himself.

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I suspect he wants to go back into private practice. Generally, Federal Judges only outright retire if they want to go back into private practice. If they want to just take it easy, they take inactive senior status instead.

Retirement frees him from the restrictions of judicial ethics and canons and is required for a return to private practice. However, his retirement annuity locks in at the 2020 level and he loses a number of benefits. Obviously he will more than make that up in private practice.

Inactive senior status allows a Judge to retain yearly cost of living increases to his salary/annuity and allows him to retain benefits. But he is forbidden from entering private practice and remains restricted by Judicial ethics and canons.