Trump Nominates Federal Judges in Arkansas and Alabama

WASHINGTON (CN) – President Donald Trump announced plans Monday to nominate the former solicitor general of Arkansas and a longtime Alabama private practice attorney to seats on federal district courts in those states.

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Lee Rudofsky left his job as Arkansas solicitor general one year ago to take his current position as the senior director for global anti-corruption compliance at Walmart. A New York native and former attorney at the firm Kirkland & Ellis, Rudofsky clerked for U.S. Circuit Judge Andrew Kleinfeld on the Ninth Circuit.

He was in office in 2017 as the state defended its plans to execute eight inmates in two weeks from arguments that the three-drug cocktail used in the executions constituted cruel and unusual punishment. Four of the inmates had their executions stayed, while four had their sentences carried out.

Rudofsky also signed briefs for the state in challenges to the Environmental Protection Agency’s air quality standards for ozone and the agency’s regulations on pollutants from coal and oil power plants.

He is also sure to face questions during his nomination process about his efforts to defend in court Arkansas’ decision to pull funding from Planned Parenthood after an anti-abortion group released videos it said showed Planned Parenthood officials selling fetal tissue for profit.

If confirmed, Rudofsky would serve on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas.

Nominated alongside Rudofsky on Monday was Austin Huffaker Jr., who currently works as a shareholder at the Montgomery, Alabama, firm Rushton, Stakely, Johnston & Garrett. Huffaker has been at the firm since 1999 and focuses his practice on defending product liability, professional malpractice and complex commercial lawsuits.

He in particular defends attorneys accused of professional negligence, according to his biography on the firm’s website.

Trump tapped Huffaker for a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama.

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