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Trump nominates Jim Gilmore for ambassador post

Trump nominates Jim Gilmore for ambassador post
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpJoaquín Castro: Trump would be 'in court right now' if he weren't the president or 'privileged' Trump flubs speech location at criminal justice conference Comey reveals new details on Russia probe during House testimony MORE is nominating former GOP presidential candidate Jim Gilmore as an ambassador to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, one of 10 diplomatic and administrative nominations sent to the Senate on Thursday.

Gilmore served as governor of Virginia from 1998-2002, and was the chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC) in 2001. He ran an unsuccessful Senate campaign in 2008 and an unsuccessful presidential campaign in 2016.

Gilmore endorsed Trump for the presidency after ending his own bid.

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The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe is an intergovernmental organization comprised of 57 countries focused on security and rights issues.

Trump also sent his pick for ambassador to Saudi Arabia to the Senate for confirmation. The president announced earlier this week that he intended to nominate retired Gen. John Abizaid for the post, which has been unfilled for the past 22 months.

The vacancy became particularly notable in recent weeks amid mounting tensions between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia over the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Abizaid, who currently serves as a visiting fellow at Stanford University, is a former head of U.S. Central Command and is well-versed in the politics of the Middle East. He retired from the military in 2007.

Trump also sent the Senate nominations for ambassadors to Macedonia, Australia, South Africa and Iraq.

His pick for ambassador to Australia is A.B. Culvahouse, who served as White House counsel in the Reagan administration and worked on presidential campaigns for both the late-Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainOvernight Defense: Senate Armed Services chair eyes Russia, China threats | Pushes Trump not to cut defense budget | Mattis says US looking for more Khashoggi evidence Dem strategist says Trump should not have attended George H.W. Bush's funeral Inhofe eyes Russian, Chinese threats in first major speech as Armed Services chairman MORE (R-Ariz.) and Trump.

Lana Marks is Trump's choice for ambassador to South Africa. Marks, who was born in South Africa, is the founder of a luxury handbag company and a member of Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.