5th Circuit nominees may include a GOP judge

President Obama is considering three federal judges, one of them a Republican, to fill vacancies on the New Orleans-based 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Texas Lawyer spoke with seven unnamed sources for its story naming the potential nominees: U.S. District Judges Xavier Rodriguez of San Antonio, Marina Garcia Marmolejo of Laredo and Gregg Costa of Galveston.

Rodriguez was a Republican judge on the Texas Supreme Court from 2001 and 2002, and President George W. Bush nominated him to the federal bench. He is viewed as an independent judge who will meet with Democrats’ approval. Texas Lawyer cites two decisions to illustrate. In a 2002 case, Rodriguez allowed a minor to get an abortion without notifying her parents because of potential abuse, and in September he allowed the U.S. Justice Department to intervene in a Texas redistricting case.

The story says Obama is apparently “playing it safe politically” by considering the three judges for nomination. Obama is following the tradition of accommodating the home state senators—in this case, Republicans Ted Cruz and John Cornyn.

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