The U.S. Senate voted Wednesday to confirm Merrick Garland as the U.S. attorney general.
The vote was 70 to 30 with several high-profile Republicans voting to confirm. Among those were Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, and Senators John Cornyn of Texas and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina.
Prominent Republican votes against were Senators Josh Hawley of Missouri and Ted Cruz of Texas, who are considered potential 2024 presidential candidates.
Garland, who is 68, has served on the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia since 1997 and was its chief judge from 2013 to 2020.
In 2016, then President Barack Obama nominated Garland to the Supreme Court, but Republicans were able to block a Senate hearing.
During confirmation hearing, Garland said his first focus would be on investigating the January 6 violence at the U.S. Capitol.
“We must do everything in the power of the justice department to prevent this kind of interference with policies of American democratic institutions,” he said.
Garland also said he would not politicize the Justice Department or interfere in the ongoing federal tax investigation into Hunter Biden, the president’s son.
When Garland is sworn in, he will become the 86th U.S. attorney general.