Former Senator Chris Dodd becomes a favorite to become the next Ambassador to Ireland as Joe Biden stands ready to become the 46th President of the United States, the Irish Times understand.
Mr Dodd, who is a close adviser to the President-Elect, is the front runner for the position currently held by Ed Crawford, Donald Trump’s candidate and strong Trump supporter.
Mr. Dodd was elected Senator for Connecticut in 1980 and served in the Chamber for 20 years, which coincided with Mr. Biden’s tenure as Senator. He previously represented Connecticut in the House of Representatives.
He briefly ran for president in 2008 and shared a campaign plane for debate with friend and rival Biden, who was also running for the Democratic nomination despite failing to make it through the primary phase.
He was a close advisor to Mr Biden during the 2020 presidential campaign. In particular, he chaired a committee that was set up to elect the former vice president’s comrade, which culminated in the selection of Kamala Harris.
A proud Irish-American, Mr. Dodd has a home in the west of Ireland and was a member of the Caucus of the Friends of Ireland on Capitol Hill when he served in Congress. All of his great grandparents were born in Ireland.
Other possible names include former Ambassador to Portugal, Elizabeth Frawley Bagley, and Anne Finucane, vice chairwoman of Bank of America. Mr Biden’s sister, Valerie, a close adviser to the President-elect who regularly speaks with pride about the family’s Irish heritage, could also be appointed, according to sources close to the Biden campaign.
While ambassadors in the United States are often political appointments, they must be approved by the Senate.
As Mr. Biden prepares to become the next president, he is putting together a transition team.
Among the names mentioned when Mr. Biden is considering people for positions is Congressman Brendan Boyle of Pennsylvania, a well-known Irish American on the hill.
The New York Times reported earlier that weekend that 43-year-old Boyle might be eligible for an administrative position, noting that he was early on to support Mr Biden’s offer for the presidency.
During an election campaign with Mr. Boyle in Philadelphia last week, the former Vice President remarked, “We have a phrase that I come from: you never forget those who got you to dance.”
Coronavirus Task Force
It is expected that Mr Biden will name a coronavirus task force as early as Monday. However, a decision on cabinet members will be made later in the month.
The coronavirus team is jointly led by former Obama Administration Surgeon General Vivek Murthy and former Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration David Kessler. This is an indication of Mr Biden’s intention to prioritize formulating a strategy for the coronavirus pandemic.
Because of his long history in Washington, Mr. Biden has a large pool of informal advisors and allies who have worked closely with him over the past several months.
Among those who could stand in line for Secretary of State are Anthony Blinken, Jake Sullivan, and Nicholas Burns. Mr Biden has announced that he will appoint a diverse cabinet representative of the American people.
Senator Elizabeth Warren has announced that she is interested in contributing. There were rumors that she might be appointed finance minister – a move that would suggest Mr Biden is in favor of left-wing politics.
Mr Biden’s campaign and transition team consists of many Irish-Americans. These include Mr. Sullivan, Mike Donilon, former Chief of Staff of Congress John McCarthy, and Jennifer O’Malley Dillon. The President-elect’s Campaign Manager is an Irish-American citizen from Boston who is a board member of the Washington Ireland program.
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