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SoCal judge a candidate for Supreme Court

May 11, 2009 8:49:04 AM PDT
A federal appeals court judge based in Pasadena is being named as a potential replacement for U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter.According to the Pasadena Star-News, Judge Kim McLane Wardlaw is under consideration by the Obama Administration.

"From the academic point of view, from the legal experience point of view, she's got the fundamental credentials," Superior Court Judge Lance Ito told the newspaper.

Judge Ito says Wardlaw has other factors in her favor as well.

"It's a plus that she's a woman, it's a plus that she's Hispanic, and it's a plus for Obama that she's politically well-connected on the Democratic side," added Ito.

Wardlaw was appointed to the 9th Circuit in 1998 by President Bill Clinton. She grew up in the Bay Area and graduated from UCLA, where she also attended law school.

"Souter was fairly liberal on a lot of things so my guess is on those things she'd be as liberal as Souter -- maybe a little bit more," Alex Kozinski, Chief Judge of the 9th Circuit, told the Star-News.

Justice Souter is stepping down from the bench in June.

President Obama says he plans to fill the vacancy by the time the Supreme Court's session begins in October.

City News Service contributed to this report.

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