- The Washington Times - Friday, December 1, 2017

Republican Sen. John Kennedy of Louisiana plans to back President Trump’s judicial nominee for the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, said The Advocate, a Baton Rouge newspaper, on Thursday.

Mr. Kennedy had expressed frustration earlier in the week with Kyle Duncan, who the president tapped to fill a vacancy on Louisiana’s federal bench.

But the nominee impressed the senator during his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday.

“After hearing his testimony and watching him gracefully handle the scrutiny of a public hearing, I am confident that Kyle Duncan will be a welcome addition to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit,” Mr. Kennedy said.

“I plan to vote in favor of him and look forward to welcoming him home to Louisiana.”

Mr. Kennedy had said on Tuesday that although Mr. Duncan is pro-life and pro-religious liberty, which he likes, the Washington, D.C., lawyer doesn’t live in Louisiana.

“I’m getting a lot of calls from people in Louisiana going, ‘Hey, I’m a Louisiana lawyer and I’m pro-life and I’m pro-religious liberty and I’ve got a lot of experience, so how come you’re picking a Washington lawyer?’ “

Mr. Duncan is from Baton Rouge, and he spent time working in Louisiana for the attorney general. But he also taught at the University of Mississippi and worked for the Texas solicitor general before moving to the District of Columbia to practice law, according to The Advocate.

Conservative advocates who have successfully pressured senators to vote for Mr. Trump’s judicial picks, recently set their eyes on Mr. Kennedy.

“Thank you @SenJohnKennedy for supporting Kyle Duncan for the 5th Circuit. He will serve with distinction and make Louisiana proud,” tweeted Carrie Severino, chief counsel for the conservative Judicial Crisis Network.

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