Trump Picks Florida Justices for Federal Appeals Court

(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Florida Supreme Court justices Barbara Lagoa and Robert Luck, who have served on the bench for just eight months, could be headed to the federal 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, after receiving President Trump’s nomination Thursday.

Governor Ron DeSantis nominated Lagoa, Luck and Justice Carlos Muniz to the state court just after he took office, following the forced retirement of three judges due to constitutional age limits.

The three conservative picks replaced three liberal justices, and changed the makeup of the court from a 4-3 liberal majority to a 6-1 conservative court.

The Atlanta-based 11th Circuit presides over cases from Florida, Alabama and Georgia. If confirmed, Lagoa and Luck would end up replacing Judge Geral Tjoflat and Judge Stanley Marcus, who would then take senior status on the court. Tjoflat and Marcus were nominated by President Gerald Ford and President Bill Clinton, respectively.

DeSantis issued a statement that reads, “President Trump has demonstrated great judgment in nominating Justices Barbara Lagoa and Robert Luck to the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. We are proud of these two Floridians who have earned the respect of many for being great jurists and public servants. They will serve our nation well.”

The 51-year-old Lagoa and 40-year-old Luck are both native Miami-Dade residents. In addition, they both served on the state’s 3rd Circuit Court of Appeal before being named to the Florida Supreme Court.

Former Governor Rick Scott appointed Luck to the 11th Judicial Circuit in Miami-Dade County six years ago. Luck then moved up to the state appellate court in 2017.

Lagoa, the first female Cuban-American to be appointed to the Florida Supreme Court, was named to the 3rd District Court of Appeal in 2006 by then-Governor Jeb Bush.