The U.S. Senate confirmed Julien X. Neals, President Joe Biden's first judicial nominee, onto New Jersey’s federal bench this week. The judge’s confirmation is being regarded as an initial step in the president’s push to usher in a more diverse and inclusive era in the country's court system.

On Tuesday, the 56-year-old’s nomination was approved by a bipartisan vote of 66 to 33. It was backed by five Republicans, and was unanimously passed by all voting Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee last month, according to CBS News.

Neals, a graduate of Morehouse College, earned a law degree from Emory University School of Law. Later, he worked as a lawyer at a private firm and also as a county counsel for Bergen County in New Jersey. In 2015, Neals was infamously stalled in a partisan gridlock by Republicans for nearly 670 days when former President Barack Obama nominated him for the federal court. His nomination effectively died near the conclusion of the 2016 congressional term, CBS News reports.

The American Bar Association, which evaluates nominees to the federal bench, unanimously voted Neals as "well qualified" in his judiciary duties.

Senator Dick Durbin, an Illinois Democrat who leads the Judiciary Committee, praised Neals and Biden's other judicial nominees as individuals who "illustrate something that is substantial and profound."

"They'll bring much-needed experiential and demographic diversity to our nation's courts," Durbin said during his remarks on Tuesday. "The face of justice is often as important as the fact of justice, and if people appearing before our courts feel there is at least a chance for success based on the background and experience of a judge, I think it's a positive thing."

Following Neals’ confirmation this week, there are now five remaining vacancies on the federal district court in New Jersey. However, the president has sent nominees to the Senate to fill three of the vacant seats, per CBS News.

Largely, Democrats view the confirmation of Neals as the opening salvo in Biden's strategy to reorder the judicial system in the wake of the Donald Trump administration. The widely controversial ex-president left a huge Republican footprint on the courts. He presided over the confirmation of more than 230 judges, 75% of whom are men and 85% of whom are white, according to the American Constitution Society.

House Democrat Bill Pascrell said naming Neals to the New Jersey federal bench is "historic” on Twitter. He added that it was "an important first step in rebalancing America's federal courts which are packed with rightwing ideologues and political extremists."

In creating the diverse judicial landscape he pledged, CBS News reports that Biden has committed to appointing judges from diverse communities with various backgrounds and professional experience, including those who have served as public defenders.

Regina Rodriguez, the president’s second judicial selection, saw her nomination in the Senate advance on Tuesday, according to Raw Story. Later in the day, the Senate confirmed Rodriguez to the federal district court in Colorado by a vote of 72 to 28, CBS News reports.

“The evidence is overwhelming,” Sen. Michael Bennet said this week on the Senate floor, according to The Denver Post. “Regina Rodriguez is an exceptional nominee with a distinguished career and commitment to service. She has blazed trails in Colorado.”