A federal judge in Kentucky has cleared a major hurdle in his bid to joins a federal appeals court.
Amul Thapar of Covington won approval on Thursday from the Senate Judiciary Committee after being nominated by President Trump for the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. The district includes Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio, and Michigan.
In a statement, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky congratulated Thapar following the vote.
"Judge Thapar has a distinguished record of public service," said McConnell. "He is a well-qualified jurist, and a man of integrity, who will bring a top legal mind to serve on the Sixth Circuit."
Senator McConnell introduced Judge Thapar during his nomination hearing on April 26.
Once considered as a possible nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court, the 47-year-old Thapar has been a federal judge for the Eastern District of Kentucky since 2007. Before then, he worked as a federal prosecutor.
Thapar's nomination now heads to the full Senate for a vote.