Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) today welcomed the Senate Judiciary Committee's approval of Jane Kelly's nomination to the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals. Her nomination was approved by a bipartisan voice vote and now goes on to the full U.S. Senate for consideration.
"I thank the Judiciary Committee, and particularly Senator Grassley, for working to move Jane Kelly's nomination so swiftly. Less than one month ago, the Judiciary Committee heard testimony on Ms. Kelly's strong qualifications, commitment to justice, and her dedication as a public servant, and I am glad the Committee has now sent her nomination to the full Senate. I look forward to working with Senator Grassley to ensure the full Senate acts on her nomination soon."
In late 2012, Harkin recommended Jane Kelly, who has served since 1994 as a federal defender in the Northern District of Iowa, to the White House to replace Judge Michael Melloy. The White House formally nominated Jane Kelly as U.S. Circuit Court Judge for the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals on January 31, 2013. On February 27th, Harkin introduced Kelly at the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on her nomination.
If confirmed, Ms. Kelly will be only the second female judge in the history of the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals, a court established in 1891. In addition, President Obama has nominated 100 former prosecutors to the federal bench. Among recent Presidents, that is the highest percentage of former prosecutors nominated. Ms. Kelly, as a federal defender, will bring a critically important perspective to the Eighth Circuit.