More public defenders are now judges at federal appeals courts. What are they bringing to the bench?

President Biden’s “Build Back Better” agenda has gotten a lot of attention in Washington, but he’s also been quietly reshaping the federal judiciary. He’s outpaced every president in the last half century when it comes to getting federal appeals court judges confirmed. And he’s appointing a record number of public defenders to those posts.

In Charlottesville, Virginia, a civil trial gets underway today involving the “Unite the Right” rally four years ago. That was a far-right demonstration with counter-protests that turned violent, and a woman named Heather Hayer was murdered when a man attacked a crowd of counter-protesters using his vehicle.