Judge Paul J. Watford, a Southern Californian who serves on the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals and has won praise from conservatives and liberals, has emerged as as finalist for President Obama's nomination to the Supreme Court.
The president has narrowed his search to three appeals court judges, including Judges Sri Srinivasan and Merrick Garland, both from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, according to officials close to the process. All three have had bipartisan support in the past.
If nominated, however, any one of them is likely to run into near-unanimous opposition from Senate Republicans, who have vowed to block action on any Obama nominee to fill the seat of Justice Antonin Scalia.
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