Biden announces 14 more nominees to courts

President BidenJoe BidenCDC working to tighten testing requirement for international travelers On The Money — Powell pivots as inflation rises Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by ExxonMobil — Manchin seeks 'adjustments' to spending plan MORE on Thursday announced plans to nominate 10 people to the federal bench and four to serve on local Washington, D.C., courts.

It's the eighth round of nominees announced by Biden, who has now named 53 federal judicial nominees.

According to statistics provided by a White House official, 72 percent of the nominees are women; 28 percent are Black; 23 percent are Asian American/Pacific Islanders; and 21 percent are Hispanic. Of the total nominees, 17  or about a third — are public defenders, and 13  or a quarter  are civil rights attorneys.


Biden has sought to emphasize diversity in race and experience with his nominations as he faces pressure from progressives, who have called for more nominees who have experience as public defenders or in civil rights law.

Several of his nominees come from outside the pool of former prosecutors and lawyers from big law firms that are a traditional source for nominations.

The pool announced Thursday includes a number of nominees who, if confirmed, would make history. For instance, John Chun, a judge on the Washington Court of Appeals, would be the first Asian American/Pacific Islander man to serve on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington.

David Ruiz, a magistrate judge on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio, would be the first Hispanic district court judge in Ohio.

Another nominee, Victoria Calvert, would be the second Black female Article III judge on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia and the first federal defender to serve as a judge on Georgia district court. Carver is a staff attorney in the Federal Defender Program in Atlanta, where she has worked since 2012.


Calvert is one of two women whom Biden is nominating to serve on Georgia district court. The other is Sarah Geraghty, senior counsel at the Law Office of the Southern Center for Human Rights based in Atlanta, who if confirmed would also serve on the northern district court.

Georgia Democratic Sens. Jon OssoffJon OssoffDemocrats anxious over Abrams silence on Georgia governor bid Perdue on possible run for Georgia governor: 'I'm concerned about the state of our state' Top Senate Democrat calls on attorney general to fire prisons chief MORE and Raphael WarnockRaphael WarnockOvernight Defense & National Security — Austin mandates vaccine for Guardsmen Biden signs four bills aimed at helping veterans Democrats anxious over Abrams silence on Georgia governor bid MORE issued statements Thursday commending Biden for following their recommendations and nominating Victoria Marie Calvert and Sarah Elisabeth Geraghty to serve on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia.

“These historic appointments would bring a rich diversity of professional experiences to the federal bench, and I look forward to supporting them through the confirmation process,” Warnock said.

Biden is also nominating Charles Fleming, who has worked in the Federal Public Defender’s office for the Northern District of Ohio for three decades, to serve as a judge on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. If confirmed, Fleming would be the second active Black judge on that court and the only one with public defender experience.

The president is nominating Dale Ho, the director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Voting Rights Project, to serve on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. Ho had been recommended by Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - The omicron threat and Biden's plan to beat it Lawmakers take aim at 'Grinches' using bots to target consumers during holidays Democratic frustration growing over stagnating voting rights bills MORE (D-N.Y.).


Christopher Kang, chief counsel of the progressive group Demand Justice, issued a statement praising Ho's nomination in particular. 

"This set of nominations builds on President Biden’s already historic commitment to nominating civil rights lawyers and public defenders to the federal bench," Kang said. "Ho has argued many of the most important democracy protection cases of the last decade, and his deep experience in protecting voting rights for everyone is exactly what is needed right now."

The Senate has moved quickly to confirm Biden’s judicial nominees, even as the body has lagged in confirming other nominees when compared to past administrations. Republicans have stalled consideration of other Biden nominees to executive branch positions, frustrating the White House.  

Updated at 11:49 a.m.