The U.S. Senate confirmed Commerce Secretary Gary Locke to be ambassador to China, where he will replace Jon Huntsman as envoy.
Locke, a former two-term governor of Washington, will be the first Chinese American to serve as ambassador to China. Huntsman resigned earlier this year and is campaigning for the Republican presidential nomination.
President Obama nominated John Bryson, a former CEO of Edison International, to replace Locke at Commerce. However, various senators are blocking a vote on Bryson over a range of issues.
Although Commerce had not announced the news, Locke took to Twitter to spread the word earlier today. “Just got confirmed by the Senate,” he wrote. “I'm looking forward to the challenge!”
China is one of the largest U.S. trading partners, a major supplier of containerized imports and holder of huge amounts of U.S. debt. Locke already has experience dealing with China on a range of trade matters, both from the Commerce Department and as governor.
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