WASHINGTON -- Wilhelmina Wright, a Minnesota Supreme Court Justice, was confirmed to the federal bench Tuesday by the U.S. Senate.

The Senate approved her confirmation to a federal judgeship in Minnesota 58-36, mostly along party line votes. She will stay in Minnesota and serve in the United States District Court.

Wright has 13 years of previous experience as an appellate-level judge in state courts. In 2012 became the first African-American woman appointed to the state's high court. President Obama nominated her last spring.

"While many judicial nominees are languishing in the Senate, she has made it through the confirmation gauntlet," Sen. Amy Klobuchar said in a statement after the vote.

Sen. Al Franken said, in a statement: "Now that she's confirmed, I'm confident she will do a great job in her new role. This is an important day for Minnesota and for our justice system."

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