Graham backs Susan Rice replacement

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey GrahamGraham, Cruz proposal to defund the U.N. is misguided 9 GOP senators Trump must watch out for UN leader willing to meet lawmakers amid push to cut funding MORE (R-S.C.) on Friday joined Sen. John McCainJohn McCainOvernight Defense: Obama commutes Manning's sentence | Boeing sees 'progress' on Air Force One costs | McCain's 0B defense budget McCain: Leak of Trump dossier ‘totally wrong’ McCain proposes 0B defense budget for 2018 MORE (R-Ariz.) in urging Republicans  to quickly approve Susan Rice's replacement at the United Nations.

President Obama on Wednesday nominated Rice to be his National Security Adviser and Samantha PowerSamantha PowerLiquidating Kim Dynasty of North Korea UN ambassador warns retreat from group will hurt US interests Cotton: UN's Israel resolution could not have happened without US coordination MORE to replace her as U.S. ambassador to the UN. The NSA spot does not require confirmation, but the Senate could hold up Power in retaliation for Obama's promotion of Rice, the public face of the administration's discredited talking points on the Benghazi terrorist attack.

“Samantha Power is a solid choice to serve as United States Ambassador to the United Nations,” Graham said in a statement. “She has the background, intellect, and toughness to fill this important diplomatic post at a time of great conflict and rising danger throughout the world.”

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McCain made similar remarks on Wednesday.

“I believe she is well-qualified for this important position,” he said, “and hope the Senate will move forward on her nomination as soon as possible.”

Power, a former journalist and human-rights advocate, previously served in the administration as the head of the National Security Council’s office of multilateral affairs and human rights. She may come under criticism for past critical statements about U.S. foreign policy and Israel, something Graham sought to head off in his statement.

“As United Nations Ambassador, she will aggressively represent the United States interests in an increasingly hostile body,” he said. “She will also be a strong supporter of our close friend and ally Israel.

“I hope the Senate will expeditiously consider her nomination.”

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