Published: Jun 17, 2014 3:39 PM EDT

MIAMI (AP) - The first openly gay black man has been confirmed as a federal judge by the U.S. Senate for the bench in South Florida.
    
The vote was unanimous Tuesday to confirm Darrin P. Gayles, who is currently a Miami-Dade Circuit Court judge. The White House noted Gayles would make history when President Barack Obama nominated him in February for an opening in the Southern District of Florida.
    
Obama chose Gayles after a previous openly gay black nominee, fellow Miami-Dade Circuit Judge William Thomas, was blocked by Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio last year and then not resubmitted by the White House. Rubio said his opposition centered on decisions Thomas made in certain cases.
    
Senators also confirmed an openly gay black woman, Staci Michelle Yandle, to a federal judgeship in Illinois.

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