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Mr. CASEY. Madam President, I rise this evening to make some brief comments regarding a judicial nominee we voted on yesterday--one of two--Judge Luis Restrepo from Philadelphia, from the southeastern corner of Pennsylvania.
I rise tonight because my train was late last night so I was not able to make some comments about his nomination, his qualifications, prior to the vote. But I was honored that he received the vote of the Senate last night.
I also rise because it is timely in another way because we are considering immigration reform. I was on the floor last week talking about yet another judicial nominee from Pennsylvania--now a judge, as of last week. Judge Nitza Quinones, who is a native of Puerto Rico, came to this country after her education and became a lawyer and an advocate, and then, ultimately, a judge for more than two decades now, and now will serve on the Federal District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
So it is true of now Judge Restrepo. A native of Colombia, Judge Restrepo became a U.S. citizen in 1993. He earned a bachelor of arts degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1981 and a juris doctor degree from Tulane University's School of Law in 1986.
He is highly regarded by lawyers and members of the bench. He exhibits an extraordinary command of the law and legal principles, as well as a sense of fairness, sound judgment, and integrity.
Judge Restrepo has served as a magistrate judge for the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania since June of 2006.
Prior to his judicial appointment, he was a highly regarded lawyer and a founding member of the Kreasner & Restrepo firm in Philadelphia, concentrating on both civil rights litigation as well as criminal defense work.
He served as an assistant Federal defender with the Community Federal Defender for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania from 1990 to 1993, and as an assistant defender at the Defender Association of Philadelphia from 1987 to 1990.
An adjunct professor at Temple University's James E. Bensley School of Law, he was also an adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Law from 1997 to 2009 and has taught with the National Institute for Trial Advocacy in regional and national programs since 1992.
I know the Presiding Officer knows something about being a law professor and the demands of that job and the demands of being an advocate.
I think anyone who looks at Judge Restrepo's biography and background would agree he is more than prepared to be a Federal district judge, and I am grateful that the Senate confirmed him.
Finally, Judge Restrepo has also served on the board of governors of the Philadelphia Bar Association and is a past president of the Hispanic Bar Association of Pennsylvania.
So for all those reasons and more, I believe he is not only ready to be a Federal judge, but I am also here to express gratitude for his confirmation and for the vote in the Senate.
As we consider immigration reform, we should be ever inspired by the stories we hear from not only judges who are nominated and confirmed here, but others as well who come to this country, who work hard, who learn a lot, and want to give back to their country by way of public service. Judge Restrepo, this week, and Judge Quinones, last week, are two fine examples of that.
With that, Madam President, I yield the floor and suggest the absence of a quorum.
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