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Senate to confirm Owen to 5th Circuit

[JURIST] The US Senate Tuesday prepared to confirm Texas Supreme Court Justice Priscilla Owen [official profile] to the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals Tuesday following a bipartisan deal reached Monday night [JURIST report; NRO text] that avoided a showdown over judicial nominees and assured Owen the simple majority needed for a confirmation vote. Under the agreement, filibusters are to be used against judicial nominees only "under extrordinary circumstances." According to the seven Democrats and seven Republicans signing the compromise, "Each signatory must use his or her own discretion and judgment in determining whether the circumstances exist" to allow the use of filibusters. If such circumstances do exist, 60 votes are required to end the filibuster. The agreement also clears the way for long-stalled nominees California Supreme Court Justice Janice Rogers Brown [official profile], nominated for the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and former Attorney General of Alabama William Pryor, nominated for the 11th US Circuit Court of Appeals. The 14 Senators party to the agreement explicitly did not commit to allowing votes on William Myers [official profile] and Henry Saad [official profile], President Bush's remaining appeals court nominees. Reuters has more.

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