The Senate confirmed Miranda Du as a federal judge for the District of Nevada Wednesday, with a split 59-39 vote. She won the post despite some Republican opposition over a 2008 sanction against Du for her handling of a worker grievance when she represented management of the Truckee Meadows Water Authority.
She was dinged by the very court on which she will now serve for not adequately pursuing a lack of jurisdiction claim in the case.
In November the Senate Judiciary Committee split along party lines, 10-8, to send her name to the full senate for a floor vote. The sanction history was cited as the Republican concern and for her purported inexperience. Du has been a lawyer for eight years.
Du, 42, got the “full support” of Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval during the committee fight, even though it was Sandoval, while he was a federal judge in 2008, who signed off on the sanction against Du.
Only three Republicans joined the Democratic majority in supporting her confirmation, Senators John McCain of Arizona, Dean Heller of Nevada and Lisa Murkowski of Arkansas.
Two Republican Senators did not vote, Orrin Hatch of Utah and Mark Kirk of Illinois.
Du, a refugee from Vietnam, fled the country with her family at the age of nine. They lived for a year in a Malaysian refugee camp before ultimately moving to the United States where they were granted asylum.
Her confirmation makes Du the first Asian Pacific American federal judge in Nevada, according to Sen. Harry Reid, of Nevada.
Du has been a partner with McDonald Carano Wilson in Nevada, specializing in employment law, generally representing management, and complex litigation.
She received her law degree from the University of California, Berkeley in 1994 and her undergraduate degree in economics from U.C. Davis in 1991.