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Center City Law Firm Partner Trump Pick To Become US Attorney In Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- A partner in a Center City law firm and former federal prosecutor is President Donald Trump's pick to become the U.S. attorney in Philadelphia.

If confirmed by the Senate after the president's nomination, Bill McSwain will move from the Drinker Biddle law firm, where he has been practicing mostly white-collar defense, to leading more than 125 prosecutors in the federal courthouse.

Pennsylvania's two U.S. senators, Republican Pat Toomey and Democrat Bob Casey, recommended the 48-year old McSwain, who lives in West Chester.

Congressman Pat Meehan, for whom McSwain worked when Meehan was U.S. Attorney, thinks he is "a terrific choice."

"Most importantly, he comes from the office. He served in the trenches, understands the mission, and is respected in the bar, before the court and throughout the region," said Meehan.

Meehan was appointed top federal prosecutor here by President George W. Bush, just days after the 9/11 attacks.

"And the question of anti-terrorism was a challenge that nobody had faced before," said Meehan.

He says McSwain, who was an assistant U.S. attorney between 2003 and 2006, knows well that mission continues, along with other issues.

"Questions with respect to public integrity, a lot of work done in the communities on anti-violence, and emerging issues that might be relevant to our time, like the opioid crisis," said Meehan.

Meehan says McSwain has a "balanced demeanor, and will be an effective" top prosecutor.Sources expect the confirmation process will take two to three months.

Back in March, Trump removed 46 holdover U.S. attorneys appointed by former President Barack Obama. Here in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, longtime prosecutor Louis Lappen has been the office's acting U.S. attorney.

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