Judiciary Panel Endorses Neomi Rao for Appeals Court Seat

WASHINGTON (AP) -

The Senate Judiciary Committee has voted to advance President Donald Trump’s nominee to replace Brett Kavanaugh on a high-profile appeals court.

The committee voted 12-10 along party lines Thursday to endorse Neomi Rao for a seat on the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

Rao, 45, heads the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, where she plays a key role in Trump’s efforts to roll back federal rules and regulations. She has never tried a case in state or federal court.

Rao’s confirmation was in doubt after two Republican senators expressed concerns about her writings. But Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley and Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst joined with GOP colleagues to move Rao’s nomination to the Senate floor. All 10 Democrats opposed her.