The governor could appoint whoever he wants to fill district court judge vacancies, under a bill the House tentatively approved Wednesday.
Currently, the governor must choose from a list of three nominees the local bar presents. This bill, SB321, would allow but not require the governor to choose from five nominees.
The House passed the bill 70-40, mostly along party lines with a majority of Republicans favoring the bill. Some Republicans voted against it and some Democrats voted in favor of it. Third and final reading is expected Thursday, and then the bill returns to the Senate.