Goodwin Liu, the Berkeley law professor whose nomination to a federal court of appeals was blocked by Republicans in the U.S. Senate, is about to become a justice of the California Supreme Court instead. The state Commission on Judicial Appointments endorsed his nomination on Wednesday, and Gov. Jerry Brown is scheduled to swear him into office on Thursday, according to news reports. Mr. Liu joined the faculty of the University of California at Berkeley School of Law in 2003. He has won awards for his teaching and his scholarship, which includes writings on education law and policy, and he has served as a special adviser to the U.S. deputy secretary of education.