Obama nominates two more fund-raisers as ambassadors
June 21st, 2013
04:29 PM ET
8 months ago

Obama nominates two more fund-raisers as ambassadors

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Washington (CNN) - President Obama Friday nominated two major fund-raisers from his 2012 campaign as ambassadors.

He tapped Denise Bauer, who was finance chair for Women for Obama and raised more than $500,000 for the president's re-election campaign, as ambassador to Belgium. She was also a key fund-raiser for the president's 2008 campaign helping to bring in between $200,000 and $500,000 as well as raising $53,500 for the first inaugural. Bauer served on the campaign's national finance committee last election as well as on the Democratic National Committee.

James "Wally" Brewster, who raised more than $500,000 for the re-election campaign along with his partner, was nominated to be ambassador to the Dominican Republic.

The gay rights organization Human Rights Campaign lauded Brewster's nomination. "Wally Brewster is an excellent choice to be our nation's ambassador to the Dominican Republic. His global business and management expertise is matched by his enthusiasm and commitment to human rights and democracy around the world. Wally's political intelligence and work in public affairs and communications would make him a valuable contribution to our nation's diplomatic efforts."

The president also nominated career foreign service officers for ambassadorships to Peru, Greece, Lebanon, Lao People's Republic, Cote d'Ivoire and to the African Union.

Last week President Obama nominated several major financial backers as ambassadors.

Also Friday the White House nominated John Berry, a former director of the Office of Personnel Management, as ambassador to Australia. Berry previously served as director of the Smithsonian's National Zoo in the Clinton Administration was Assistant Secretary of Interior for policy and management as well as an official with the Smithsonian Institution.

The Human Rights Campaign also applauded the naming of Berry, a member of its board, pointing out when he headed OPM he was the highest ranking openly gay or lesbian official in the executive branch.

"John Berry has been a devoted public servant for thirty years, and will bring tremendous experience to our embassy in Canberra. His lifetime of professional experiences make him an outstanding choice to be the nation's next Ambassador to Australia. I urge the Senate to confirm his nomination."

CNN White House Producer Adam Aigner-Treworgy and CNN's Laura Resnick contributed to this story.


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. tom l.

    Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss. No change. Just another crooked, can-be-bought politician.

    June 21, 2013 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  2. tom l.

    I believe there was a total of 4,500 people at the triumphant return to the Brandenburg Gait for Obama's last speech.

    June 21, 2013 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  3. Tampa Tim

    Did anyone in Germany throw a shoe at the president? According to wingnuts, that is a gesture of love.

    June 21, 2013 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    Obama continues to nominate ambassadors in the same manner every POTUS before him did it and the MSM and GOP/Teatrolls continue to react as though it's something new and different. Story at 11.

    June 21, 2013 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    "I believe there was a total of 4,500 people at the triumphant return to the Brandenburg Gait for Obama's last speech."

    It was by invitation and there were 6,000 in attendance. If you think Obama doesn't "sell out" every venue he appears in, then I've got a radiation death ray to sell you....oh wait, no I don't...they already caught and arrested the KKK member who was trying to do that this week.

    June 21, 2013 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  6. Barrack Hussein

    Obama = total utter ignorance.

    June 21, 2013 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  7. Tampa Tim

    Tom – how did you arrive at that number, Fox did not show the speech. But you believe Glenn Beck had a Million at his rally (hate fest) a few years ago, even though it was closer to ten thousand.

    June 21, 2013 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  8. Grumpy2012

    Only $500,000 for an ambassadorship?

    Joe Kennedy paid a heck of a lot more for his.

    June 21, 2013 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  9. yeah right

    tom l.

    I believe there was a total of 4,500 people at the triumphant return to the Brandenburg Gait for Obama's last speech
    --

    The event was by invitation. In any case, what does that have to do with appointments? It's not like he appointed his dog trainer to head FEMA or anything like that.

    June 21, 2013 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  10. emskadittle

    how is this different than any other president?

    June 21, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  11. tom l.

    @Sniffit,
    Thanks for acknowledging that our current president is no different from any other president before. He can be bought off just like the rest of them.

    June 21, 2013 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  12. tom l.

    @Tampa,
    You should know by now that I really don't watch Fox. I prefer to read the Economic Policy Journal for authentic reporting.

    June 21, 2013 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  13. Me

    tom l.

    @Tampa,
    You should know by now that I really don't watch Fox. I prefer to read the Economic Policy Journal for authentic reporting.
    __________________________

    Tom, that is the only line the left has, fox this fox that…blah blah blah!!!! They can't come up with anything useful or factual!!!

    June 21, 2013 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  14. Tampa Tim

    Tom – you win the joke of the day. Congrats!

    June 21, 2013 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  15. Tampa Tim

    Tom – stop reading that foreign material that is only published quarterly. You'll miss too much.

    June 21, 2013 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  16. Tom L.

    @Tampa
    Nice! What did I win? :) I'm not sure what joke I made. Enlighten me.

    June 21, 2013 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  17. Tom L.

    @yeah right
    You're right. I was in a snarky mood so i thought i'd take a little jab. :) Honestly, what is important of note is that our current president is no different from any other president. He really is just your typical politician, with "friends and enemies"; and some he punishes while others he rewards. This is one of those rewards. I will admit I have no idea whether the people appointed are qualified or not and I have no idea what qualifications there are. However, I do find it quite noteworthy that these ambassadors also happen to be major fundraisers. Just another way that Obama is following the same exact direction of his predecessor. No change. No hope. All of our government has lost its way.

    June 21, 2013 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  18. Rick McDaniel

    The usual donor payback, by giving them a government paycheck.

    June 21, 2013 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  19. Data Driven

    @Tom,

    Those of us on the Left never said Obama was inherently superior to any other President (though we, mostly, prefer his policies to, say, Bush's). It has been those on the Right who have been obsessed with the idea that Obama is supposed to be a "messiah".

    June 21, 2013 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  20. just sayin

    Sniffit
    "I believe there was a total of 4,500 people at the triumphant return to the Brandenburg Gait for Obama's last speech."
    It was by invitation and there were 6,000 in attendance.
    ---

    it is called control. part of the obama smoke and mirror show. invitation only ensures that obama opponents are not present and it looks like all of germany loves obama, when the truth is, most do not.

    June 21, 2013 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  21. Margaritha

    Obama's speech in Berlin was a flop because by now Europeans have realized that Obama is all talk and no action.
    A major Berlin newspaper wrote that the speech had no substance , just rhetoric and certainly didn't even come close to Kennedy's and Reagan's powerful speeches which many people still remember very well so many years later.
    America has a weak President who doesn't know a thing about leadership and decision making , yes he is an empty suit after all.

    June 21, 2013 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  22. Bill from GA

    "Obama nominates two more fund-raisers as ambassadors"
    Hey, Barry, Nothing wrong with that.
    But don't send them to Benghazi to help out the CIA, OK?

    June 22, 2013 12:17 am at 12:17 am |
  23. Michael Benjamin

    This is nothing new. All presidents reward their contributors with plum ambassadorships. The career foreign service officers get the swamp posts.

    June 22, 2013 02:13 am at 2:13 am |
  24. Doc1

    Barrack Hussein
    Obama = total utter ignorance.

    --------------------

    By appointing ambassadors? If you're going to troll with partisan vitriol at least make an attempt to inject some kind of intelligent correlate.

    June 22, 2013 08:14 am at 8:14 am |
  25. scott

    Sniffitt,
    You defend him no matter what, are you perhaps trying to get an Ambassador job. It must be nice to go thru life in a ignorant bliss.

    June 22, 2013 08:28 am at 8:28 am |
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