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Becerra formally nominated for Calif. attorney general

 Becerra formally nominated for Calif. attorney general
© Greg Nash

California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) on Tuesday formally nominated Rep. Xavier BecerraXavier BecerraOVERNIGHT ENERGY: Groups sue EPA over 'backwards' lead rule | 12 states, green groups sue EPA over airline standards they deem insufficient | Biden taps Janet McCabe to serve as deputy at EPA 12 states, green groups sue EPA over airline standards they deem insufficient Democratic senator: COVID-19 relief is priority over impeachment trial MORE (D) to become the state’s next attorney general, setting up confirmation hearings and a vote likely to come later this month.

Becerra, who was sworn in for a 13th term as a member of Congress on Tuesday, would replace Kamala Harris, who resigned to take a seat in the U.S. Senate.

Brown announced last month he would tap Becerra, a Los Angeles-area Democrat, to replace Harris after she won the seat of retiring Sen. Barbara BoxerBarbara Levy BoxerTrump administration halting imports of cotton, tomatoes from Uighur region of China Biden inaugural committee to refund former senator's donation due to foreign agent status Questions and answers about the Electoral College challenges MORE (D).

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Brown has hinted that in naming Becerra, he opted for a candidate who would be willing to challenge the incoming Trump administration on a bevy of federal initiatives that stand in contrast to California’s own laws, chief among them efforts to combat climate change.

“Xavier has been an outstanding public servant, in the state legislature, the U.S. Congress and as a deputy attorney general,” Brown said in a statement. “I’m confident he will be a champion for all Californians and help our state aggressively combat climate change.”

A special California Assembly committee will hold hearings beginning next Tuesday to consider Becerra’s nomination. Democrats control supermajorities in both chambers of California’s legislature, making it all but certain that Becerra will win a fast confirmation. He is expected to resign from Congress once he is confirmed.