Updated 9:42am 5/23/17
Governor Terry Branstad has been confirmed to be U.S. Ambassador to China.
Eighty-two U.S. Senators voted for Branstad’s nomination and 13 Democrats voted no late Monday afternoon.
Branstad will resign as governor on Wednesday morning and Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds will be sworn in as Iowa’s 43rd governor.
Maryland Senator Ben Cardin, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, says Branstad “has a passion about American values.”
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Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley stressed Branstad’s tenure as the nation’s longest-serving governor.
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Joni Ernst, Iowa’s other U.S. Senator, says Branstad will be an “effective advocate” for U.S. interests in China.
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Ernst also mentioned Branstad’s long-standing relationship with Chinese President Xi Jinping after their initial meeting in Iowa back in 1985.
Iowa Governor Terry Branstad has been confirmed as President Donald Trump’s ambassador to China.
The U.S. Senate approved Branstad’s nomination in a vote late Monday afternoon by a vote of 82-13.
Branstad, who is 70, says he intends to use his decades-long relationship with Chinese President Xi Jinping to advance U.S. and international interests.
The two met in 1985 when Xi, then a provincial official, led an agricultural trade delegation to Iowa.
Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds will take over as governor for the remainder of Branstad’s term once he officially resigns.