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Henry Floyd

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Henry Floyd
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Current Court Information:
Fourth Circuit
Title:   Judge
Appointed by:   Barack Obama
Active:   10/3/2011-Present
Preceded by:   Karen J. Williams
Past post:   District of South Carolina
Past term:   2003-2011
Past post 2:   13th Judicial Circuit, South Carolina
Past term 2:   1992-2003
Personal History
Born:   1947
Hometown:   Brevard, NC
Undergraduate:   Wofford College, 1970
Law School:   University of South Carolina Law, 1973

Henry Franklin Floyd is an Article III federal judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. He was nominated by President Barack Obama in January 2011. Prior to his elevation to the appellate level, Floyd served on the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina. He joined that court in 2003 after being nominated by President George W. Bush.[1]

Early life and education

A South Carolina native, Floyd graduated from Wofford College with his bachelor's degree in 1970 and from the University of South Carolina School of Law with his J.D. degree in 1973.[1]

Professional career

Floyd started his legal career as a private practice attorney licensed in the State of South Carolina from 1973 to 1992 before becoming a Circuit Court judge in the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit Court of South Carolina from 1992 to 2003.[1]

Judicial career

Fourth Circuit

Nomination Tracker
 Candidate:Henry Floyd
 Court:Fourth Circuit
 Progress:Confirmed 250 days after nomination.
ApprovedAABA Rating:Unanimously Well Qualified

Floyd was nominated for elevation to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit on January 26, 2011, by President Barack Obama to fill the seat vacated by Karen J. Williams. In the press release Obama stated:

Throughout his career, Henry Floyd has demonstrated unwavering integrity and a firm commitment to public service. I am proud to nominate him to serve on the United States Court of Appeals.[2][3]

Floyd received a Unanimously Well Qualified rating from the American Bar Association. He had a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on April 13, 2011, and you can find his Committee Questionnaire available here and his Questions for the Record available here.[4]

On October 3, 2011, Floyd was confirmed by the United States Senate with a vote of 96-0.[4]

District of South Carolina

On the recommendation of U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham, Floyd was nominated by President George W. Bush on May 15, 2003, to a seat vacated by Dennis Shedd. Floyd was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on September 22, 2003, on a voice vote and received commission on September 24, 2003.[1]

Notable cases

Challenge to Virginia ban on same-sex marriage (2014)

     United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit (Bostic v. Rainey, et al, No. 14-1173)

Judge Henry Floyd wrote the 2-1 opinion affirming the Eastern District of Virginia's ruling that found a ban on same-sex marriages to be unconstitutional. Judge Roger Gregory joined the majority opinion and Paul Niemeyer wrote the dissent. The majority found the defendants arguments that the law protected responsible procreation, proper child-rearing and the tradition of marriage, to be in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment's Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses. Judge Floyd wrote in conclusion:
We recognize that same-sex marriage makes some people deeply uncomfortable. However, inertia and apprehension are not legitimate bases for denying same-sex couples due process and equal protection of the laws. Civil marriage is one of the cornerstones of our way of life. It allows individuals to celebrate and publicly declare their intentions to form lifelong partnerships, which provide unparalleled intimacy, companionship, emotional support, and security. The choice of whether and who to marry is an intensely personal decision that alters that course of an individual's life. Denying same-sex couples this choice prohibits them from participating fully in our society, which is precisely the type of segregation that the Fourteenth Amendment cannot countenance.[5][3]

In dissent, Judge Paul Niemeyer wrote that the United States Constitution does not explicitly define fundamental right for same-sex marriages it should be left to the States to decided if it should be recognized or not. He wrote:

The U.S. Constitution does not, in my judgement, restrict the States' policy choices on this issue. If given the choice, some States will surely recognize same-sex marriage and some will surely not. But that is, to be sure, the beauty of federalism.[5][3]

See also

External links