Obama Finally Names Nominee for U.N. Reform Post, But He Has No U.N. or Diplomatic Experience
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
By Patrick Goodenough
The delay in putting in place a U.S. permanent representative for U.N. management and reform has drawn fire over the past year. Critics said the delay suggested the administration does not prioritize reform of the organization that gets more than one-fifth of its operating budget from the U.S.
The choice of nominee, a person whose resume includes no United Nations or diplomatic experience, may bring fresh criticism.
The White House announced Monday that, pending Senate approval, the post will go to Joseph Torsella, chairman of the Pennsylvania State Board of Education and a former president and CEO of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia.
Torsella narrowly lost a Pennsylvania Democratic primary for a U.S. House of Representatives seat in 2004, and he ran briefly in the early stages of the Democratic primary for the 2010 U.S. Senate race, before withdrawing.
Richard Grenell, who served as spokesman for four U.S. ambassadors to the U.N. during the Bush administration, said Tuesday that neither Obama nor current ambassador to the world body Susan Rice had “given the American people one shred of evidence to show they are interested in reforming the U.N.”
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