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Senate Confirms Next US Ambassador to UN - 2004-06-24

The U.S. Senate has confirmed President Bush's choice to be the next Ambassador to the United Nations. The Senate, by voice vote, confirmed former Senator John Danforth as Ambassador to the United Nations.

Mr. Danforth will succeed John Negroponte, who is now U.S. ambassador to Iraq.

The 67-year-old Mr. Danforth is well-known in the Senate, where he served for nearly two decades as a Republican Senator from Missouri before retiring in 1995.

Republican Senator Richard Lugar of Indiana, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, offered a strong endorsement of the nominee.

"Those of us who had the privilege of serving with him can certainly attest to his integrity, to his intellect, his sound judgment, and his good humor,? Mr. Lugar said. ?President Bush has made a very wise choice in my judgment for an extremely important position."

The top Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee, Senator Joe Biden of Delaware, said Mr. Danforth would not be afraid to challenge the President's policies when he believes it is necessary.

"Jack is a team player. Jack is a supporter of the president. Jack feels strongly that the president's mission is correct. But Jack will also, if he disagrees, not hesitate one minute, in my view, to privately tell the president," Mr. Biden said.

Before he was nominated to represent the United States at the United Nations, Mr. Danforth was serving as President Bush's special envoy to Sudan. Lawmakers said his experience in that position would be crucial as the world body seeks to restore peace and stability to the troubled western Darfur region.