Shared from the 2/8/2019 American Press eEdition

Senate panel approves Cain for Minaldi’s seat

Vote for US district judge heads to full Senate

The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday approved President Donald Trump’s recommendation that Lake Charles attorney James D. Cain Jr. be the new U.S. district judge for the Western District of Louisiana. The vote now heads to the full Senate.

The late Patricia Minaldi was judge for the Western District after being appointed in 2003 by then-President George W. Bush. She served until taking retirement disability in 2017, and the seat has been vacant since then.

Minaldi, who also worked as a felony prosecutor and was elected as a judge for the 14th Judicial District Court in 1996 — the first female judge for the district — died at age 60 on Dec. 1, 2018.

Cain was born in DeRidder and attended McNeese State University on a basketball scholarship, where he earned a degree in finance and economics. He earned his law degree from Southern University Law Center.

Upon graduation, Cain served as a judicial law clerk for Judge Henry L. Yelverton of the Louisiana Third Circuit Court of Appeal. He has been a lawyer in private practice since 1994, gaining extensive trial experience in the areas of product liability cases, business and commercial litigation.

He has also been admitted to practice in the Middle and Eastern Federal Districts of Louisiana, as well as the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal and the U.S. Supreme Court.

Cain has served on many boards, including the St. Louis Catholic High School Board, Our Lady Queen of Heaven Trust Board, Calcasieu Parish Crime Stoppers Board, and as board president of the Mc-Neese Alumni Association.

Before starting his own firm, Loftin, Cain and LeBlanc, he practiced for 12 years at the Lundy & Davis law firm. Cain is the son of former state Sen. James David Cain.

The Senate Judiciary Committee also approved two other Trump nominees from Louisiana, including Donald Washington as director of the U.S. Marshals Service and Wendy Vitter for U.S. district judge for the Eastern District of Louisiana.

In commending the approvals by the committee, U.S. Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., said, “Confirming qualified nominees for the bench and executive branch is one of the Senate’s highest responsibilities. Wendy, James, and Don have the experience and qualifications necessary to perform these jobs well, and they are committed to upholding the Constitution.”

Further, Cassidy said, “I’m glad the Senate Judiciary Committee approved their nominations and I urge the full Senate to confirm them as soon as possible so they can get to work serving the people of Louisiana and the country.”

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