Credentials Ceremony: Nides (Israel), Cohen (Canada), Udall (New Zealand), Carpenter (OSCE)

 

 

 

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U.S. Senate Confirms Two Ex-Senators and Two Widows of Senators to Ambassadorships. Yay!

 

On October 26, the institution that used to be called the “world’s greatest deliberative body” finally confirmed four ambassadorships despite Cancun Cruz’s blanket hold. The senators confirmed the former senator from Arizona for a post in Turkey, confirmed the former senator for New Mexico for a post in New Zealand and Samoa, and they confirmed the widows of two senators who used to represent Arizona and Massachusetts.
Oh, yes, the U.S. Senate also confirmed three Foreign Service lists two days after they confirmed their friends to these ambassadorships. By Thursday, somebody must have thought, hey, it might look bad that only Senate-connected nominees were confirmed on Tuesday.
Now, no one really think that, right?   Does it look bad? Wait! Did you think that?
Well, somebody did! So they rolled out what we’re calling their fruit basket strategery. Sure, they confirmed four political appointees but they also confirmed 283 regular Foreign Service folks who have been waiting from 2-3 months for their confirmation.
Apples and oranges in the fruit basket, see?
Do send your thanks to these jolly, old fellows in the Senate.
AMBASSADORSHIPS
2021-10-26 PN872 Jeffry Lane Flake, of Arizona, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Republic of Turkey.
2021-10-26 PN918 Tom Udall, of New Mexico, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to New Zealand, and to serve concurrently and without additional compensation as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Independent State of Samoa.
2021-10-26 PN1008 Cindy Hensley McCain, of Arizona, for the rank of Ambassador during her tenure of service as U.S. Representative to the United Nations Agencies for Food and Agriculture.
2021-10-26 PN1031 Victoria Reggie Kennedy, of Massachusetts, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Republic of Austria.
FOREIGN SERVICE LISTS
2021-10-28 PN904 Foreign Service | Nominations beginning Ninoshka Abreu Guerra, and ending Stefanie Nicole Yacubovich, which 224 nominations were received by the Senate and appeared in the Congressional Record on July 19, 2021.
2021-10-28 PN905 Foreign Service | Nominations beginning Rosemary Gallant, and ending Eric Wolff, which 17 nominations were received by the Senate and appeared in the Congressional Record on July 19, 2021.
2021-10-28 PN1015 Foreign Service | Nominations beginning Elizabeth R. Baiocchi, and ending William K. Makaneole, which 42 nominations were received by the Senate and appeared in the Congressional Record on August 9, 2021.

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Nominee: Former Senator Tom Udall to be Ambassador to New Zealand and to the Independent State of Samoa

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President Biden announced his intent to nominate former NM Democratic Senator Tom Udall to be the next Ambassador to New Zealand and Samoa. The WH released the following brief bio:

Tom Udall, Nominee for Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to New Zealand and to the Independent State of Samoa

Tom Udall has a long and distinguished career in public service.  He most recently served two terms as United States Senator from New Mexico (2009-2021) and served five terms as United States Representative from New Mexico’s 3rd Congressional District (1999-2009).  While in office, Udall was a notable champion for the environment, for Native Americans, for government and election reform and for resolving international disputes peacefully, if possible.  Earlier in his career, Udall was elected twice as Attorney General of New Mexico (1991-1999) and also served as an Assistant United States Attorney.  His Senate Committee assignments included the Committee on Foreign Relations, the Committee on Appropriations, the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, the Committee on Indian Affairs, the Committee on Rules and Administration, the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, and the International Narcotics Control Caucus.  Udall has a B.A. degree from Prescott College, a Bachelor of Law from Cambridge University, and a J.D. from the University of New Mexico.

As pointed out elsewhere, there are now three former senators nominated for ambassadorships: Udall, Flake, and Salazar.
When confirmed, Senator Udall would succeed former Senator Scott P. Brown who served from 2017-2021. Since the 1960s, we could only identify three career diplomats appointed as chief of mission to New Zealand:

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