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Senate OKs vote on Ariz. justice to join US court

PHOENIX – The U.S. Senate has narrowly cleared the way for a final
confirmation vote Tuesday on President Barack Obama’s nomination of Arizona
Supreme Court Justice Andrew Hurwitz to serve on a federal appeals court.

Hurwitz’s departure to serve on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals would
give Republican Gov. Jan Brewer a third appointment to the five-justice state
high court.

The Senate’s vote Monday to end debate on Hurwitz’s nomination was 60-39, with
eight Republicans joining all Democrats but one in voting for cloture.

The 60 aye votes were the minimum needed.

Hurwitz is a Democrat who was a prominent Phoenix attorney when he was
appointed to the Arizona Supreme Court in 2003 by Brewer’s predecessor, Democrat
Janet Napolitano.