Obama has vacancy to fill on Atlanta appeals court

President Barack Obama has a vacancy to fill on the federal appeals court in Atlanta.

On Friday, Judge Stanley Birch, appointed in 1990 by President George H.W. Bush, retired from the court. He will join JAMS Inc., a private mediation and arbitration firm.

The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has 12 judges and has jurisdiction over federal cases from Georgia, Alabama and Florida. Because Birch is from Atlanta, Obama is expected to replace him with a lawyer or judge from Georgia. Obama's nominee must be confirmed by the U.S. Senate before he or she takes the bench.