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2 judges win approval for US District Court bench in Nevada

File/Creative Commons

LAS VEGAS (AP) — The U.S. District Court in Nevada is getting two new judges, following Senate approval for the lifetime appointments of former Clark County District Court Judge Cristina Silva and University of Nevada Las Vegas law school professor Anne Traum.

Silva, who previously served as an assistant U.S. attorney in Nevada and assistant state attorney in Florida, will fill a Las Vegas vacancy created in 2018 when Judge James Mahan moved to senior status.

Traum, an associate dean and director of the appellate clinic at the William S. Boyd School of Law, is scheduled to serve in Reno, where Judge Robert Clive Jones took senior status in 2016.

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Silva and Traum were among five federal district court judges and one circuit court judge approved late Wednesday by the Senate. The vote for Silva was 50-46 and for Traum it was 49-47.

Nevada has seven U.S. District Court judges, and the two vacancies had been listed as judicial emergencies by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts.

In a statement from the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, Chief Nevada District Judge Miranda Du praised the appointments and noted that the courts in Las Vegas and Reno had more than 3,100 new case filings in 2021.

President Barack Obama previously nominated Traum, but her selection was blocked by then-Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who halted judicial confirmations following the 2016 death of Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonin Scalia.

Silva was appointed to the Nevada state court bench in Las Vegas in 2019 by Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak.

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Silva and Traum were nominated last year by President Joe Biden on recommendations by Nevada’s U.S. senators, Democrats Catherine Cortez Masto and Jacky Rosen.