Our appeals court has not welcomed a new member in three years. Until now. In August, the United States Senate confirmed President Trump’s first nominee to join the Eleventh Circuit: Kevin C. Newsom. You will find a story from the Daily Report here. Judge Newsom’s biography may be found here on the Eleventh Circuit website. Meanwhile, Judge Newsom has now spoken his first lines on the Eleventh Circuit stage. The first opinion authored by our newest judge, Morrisey v. United States, begins with this marvelous turn of phrase: “This is a tax case. Fear not, keep reading.” The second opinion, Secretary, U.S. Department of Labor v. Preston, includes this reader-friendly introduction: “We won’t bury the lede. In response to the district court’s certified question, we answer yes.” We have only a small sample size, of course, but it seems that Judge Newsom, like Chief Judge Ed Carnes and Judge Rosenbaum before him, will narrate his cases with playful, colorful language.
In September, President Trump nominated Elizabeth L. “Lisa” Branch to join Judge Newsom on the Eleventh Circuit bench. The White House described her background here in this press release. Judge Branch has served for five years on the Georgia Court of Appeals. Early in her career, she clerked for the late Judge J. Owen Forrester in our own Northern District of Georgia. You will find a longer story by Greg Land of the Daily Report. The Senate has not yet acted on the nomination, although you judicial wonks can follow the progress on Judge Branch’s ballotpedia.org page.