Ketanji Brown Jackson becomes first black woman on US Supreme Court

Mr Biden said: “We’ve taken another step toward making our highest court reflect the diversity of America. She will be an incredible justice.”

Ms Jackson will join the highest court in the summer, when Justice Stephen Breyer retires.

The nine-member court will continue to be dominated by six conservative over three liberal justices.

Mr Biden had pledged during the presidential election to nominate a black woman to the court.

During four days of Senate confirmation hearings last month, Ms Jackson spoke about how her teacher parents struggled through racial segregation.

She went on to attend Harvard University, served as a public defender and worked at a private law firm, before becoming a judge.

In the hearings, she rejected Republican suggestions that she was “soft” on crime, having defended Guantanamo Bay prisoners, and that she had been too lenient on criminals she had sentenced.

Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader in the Senate, called Ms Jackson a “liberal activist”.

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