Two of President Barack Obama's biggest fundraisers were confirmed by the Senate for ambassadorships on Tuesday morning in a move that Republicans say proves that the White House and Senate Democrats are prioritizing "political favors" over successful U.S. diplomacy.
Noah Bryson Mamet and Colleen Bell were confirmed by the Senate for ambassador positions in Argentina and Hungary, respectively.
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Critics say that neither are qualified for the diplomatic posts they were given. Mamet, for example, has never been to Argentina. Bell is a well-known producer most famous for her work on soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful, and was unable to name a single strategic interest that the United States has in Hungary.
Sen. Bob Corker (R., Tenn.), the ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said that he is disappointed in the decision to prioritize political considerations over filling diplomatic posts with qualified professionals.
"It is disappointing that in a transparent move, the White House and the Senate Majority Leader have chosen to prioritize doing political favors instead of working with Congress to confirm professional diplomats, further delaying our ability to fill important positions around the world," said Corker in a statement.