A new federal judge appointed by President Donald Trump is drawing applause from an unexpected source–a South Florida congresswoman who is a firm opponent of the administration.
Last week, the U.S. Senate confirmed Rodney Smith on a 78-18 vote to serve as a federal district court judge for the Southern District of Florida. Florida’s two U.S. senators–Republicans Marco Rubio and Rick Scott–voted to confirm Smith. All of the opposition to the nominees came from the Democratic side of the chamber.
While some Democrats opposed the nomination, U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Fla., who has been a staunch critic of the administration, praised Smith on Friday.
“I am overjoyed by the recent confirmation of Judge Rodney Smith to serve a lifetime appointment on the federal bench in South Florida. He grew up in Liberty City, one of Miami’s most economically disadvantaged neighborhoods, and selflessly gives back to the community that helped shape him,” she said. “Judge Smith has for many years been actively involved in the 5000 Role Models of Excellence Project, the in-school, dropout prevention program that I founded more than 25 years ago, through which he helps nurture boys of color who reflect earlier versions of himself. In addition to mentoring students, recruiting new mentors, and participating in celebratory and ceremonial rites of passage, he has generously supported the Role Models foundation and is listed on its Wall of Giving and Philanthropy.
“Judge Smith is an exemplar of the biblical passage, ‘From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required; and from the one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded.’ I applaud him for this outstanding professional achievement and thank him for being a living and loving example of the kind of man I dream every Role Models boy will grow up to be,” Wilson added.
Reach Kevin Derby at firstname.lastname@example.org.