April 13, 2021
Politico’s Playbook ran a scoop on Monday, April 12—reporting that President Joe Biden is preparing to name Republican Cindy McCain to a coveted ambassador post in Western Europe in what would be his administration’s first Republican appointee to a Senate-confirmed position.
McCain is undergoing vetting to be nominated for U.S. ambassador to the U.N. World Food Programme, a mission based in Rome, according to two sources with knowledge of the matter. This comes after the Administration declined to install at least one member from the opposing party in a Cabinet position—a practice of three consecutive presidents (Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama) before Donald Trump broke the streak.
Cindy McCain, the wife of the late military hero and Senator from Arizona John McCain, gave Biden a critical boost in Arizona with her endorsement of the Democrat over Trump. In doing so, she helped Biden become the only Democratic presidential nominee to carry the state since Clinton in 1996.
McCain, 66, is undergoing a background check for the post, Politico notes. The Biden administration is expected to announce most of its ambassadors at the same time, rather than individually.
As chair of the McCain Institute board of trustees, McCain has worked on curbing world hunger and human trafficking. During the 2008 campaign, she traveled to Georgia with the U.N.’s World Food Programme to visit wounded soldiers after a Russian invasion and also monitored the program’s work in Southeast Asia and Africa.
Research contact: @politico