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POTUS Taps Ex-GOP Senator as Ambassador to Turkey

POTUS Taps Ex-GOP Senator as Ambassador to Turkey

President Joe Biden has nominated former Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) to serve as the United States ambassador to the Republic of Turkey, NBC News confirmed on Tuesday.

Photo by Paul Marotta/Getty Images

Flake opted out of running for reelection in the 2018 midterm elections over the GOP’s embrace of ex-President Donald Trump, of whom he was a reliably frequent critic.

Trump’s willingness to kowtow to authoritarian leaders such as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, whose powers were consolidated through a national ballot referendum in 2018, constituted a significant portion of Flake’s opposition to the Trump Administration’s approach to foreign policy.

“Given the strategic importance of the United States’ relationship with our long-time NATO Ally, the Republic of Turkey, I am honored and humbled by the trust President Biden has placed in me with this ambassadorial nomination. This is a pivotal post at an important time for both of our countries. Cheryl and I are grateful for the opportunity to serve, and eager to get to know the extraordinary people of Turkey,” Flake wrote in a post that was published on Medium.

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“If confirmed by the Senate, I will be pleased to join a strong, experienced and capable team representing U.S. interests abroad. Having served in both the U.S. House and Senate, I understand and appreciate the role Congress plays in U.S. foreign policy, and I look forward to that partnership,” he continued.

“I also understand the value of having America speak with one voice. Having lived overseas, I have a deep appreciation for the indispensable role that the United States plays around the world. There is no substitute for U.S. leadership,” Flake added. “With this nomination, the Biden Administration reaffirms the best tradition of American foreign policy and diplomacy: the credo that partisan politics should stop at the water’s edge. U.S. foreign policy can and should be bipartisan. That is my belief as well, and my commitment.”

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