As is the norm when a new President is inaugurated, US Attorney Johnny Sutton of the Western Judicial District of Texas has resigned his position.
Sutton's resignation was voluntary, [spokeswoman Shana] Jones said, and his future plans were not immediately disclosed. He was not available for comment.
U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith, R-San Antonio, the ranking Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, said Sutton "did a good job overall as U.S. attorney."
Appointed to the office by President George W. Bush in 2001, Sutton followed a time-worn practice of stepping down to allow a new president to nominate a replacement.
The resignation leaves a vacancy in the Western District of Texas, which includes San Antonio, Waco, Del Rio, Austin and El Paso.
There are also U.S. attorney vacancies in the Southern District, which includes Laredo and Houston, and the Northern District, which includes Dallas.
Texas's two U.S. senators and congressional Democrats will now begin vetting candidates for the positions.
The delegation will offer candidates to Obama, whose final nominees will need Senate confirmation.
Lawyers who have expressed interest in Sutton's post include Juanita C. Hernández with the Securities and Exchange Commission; Mike McCrum, a former federal prosecutor; San Antonio City Attorney Michael Bernard; and Travis County Attorney David Escamilla.
Also interested are: Austin lawyer Scott Hendler; Robert Pittman, a U.S. magistrate judge in Austin; and John Murphy, a Western District federal prosecutor.