President Biden will nominate former New Mexico Sen. Tom Udall as his ambassador to New Zealand, tapping another onetime senator to serve in his state department.
Why it matters: Biden is drawing heavily on politicians, longtime aides and former diplomats as he fills out his ambassadorial ranks, giving short shrift to pure political donors.
- He is also expected to nominate Jane Hartley, the former ambassador to France, as his pick for the Court of St. James in the United Kingdom, according to people familiar with the matter.
The big picture: Biden still plans to nominate political ambassadors for roughly 30% of his openings and filling the remaining slots with career foreign services officers.
- On Friday he’ll be announcing three more names from the diplomatic corps: Caryn McClelland, for Brunei Darussalam; Michael Murphy for Bosnia and Herzegovina; and Howard Van Vranken for Botswana.
Go deeper: If confirmed by the senate, Udall will join former Republican Sen. Jeff Flake, who was picked for Turkey, and former Sen. Ken Salazar, who has been nominated for Mexico.