He is the son of retired Federal Judge Jim Moody and worked at the Wright law firm in Little Rock before becoming a judge in 2003. U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor, who's the most important cog in the judicial recommendation machinery in Arkansas by virtue of being a Democrat and the senior senator, worked in the Wright firm, too, before going to Washington.
He was among six nominees made nationwide by Obama.
This announcement could affect races shaping up for circuit judge in 2014. As it stands, one seat, Judge Collins Kilgore's, will be open on account of retirement and two candidates have already indicated an interest in that seat — Cathi Compton and Mike Reif. Two seats would give each an opening, helpful if their early groundwork has discouraged other potential judicial candidates. The notion that Congress might get a judicial nominee of Obama approved in nine months, before filing for office next year, might be problematic, however.