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Biden’s pick for ambassador to Israel to appear before Senate for confirmation

Wednesday hearing expected to go smoothly for Tom Nides, who has been holding talks with lawmakers from both parties and is not facing opposition

Jacob Magid is The Times of Israel's US correspondent

Then-Deputy Secretary of State Thomas R. Nides (center) talks to South Korean Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan (right) in Seoul, South Korea, on February 29, 2012. (AP Photo/ Lee Jin-man, Pool)
Then-Deputy Secretary of State Thomas R. Nides (center) talks to South Korean Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan (right) in Seoul, South Korea, on February 29, 2012. (AP Photo/ Lee Jin-man, Pool)

US President Joe Biden’s nominee to serve as the next ambassador to Israel will appear before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for a confirmation hearing on Wednesday.

Tom Nides will be among nine Biden administration nominees to face the Foreign Relations Committee, according to the panel’s schedule published on Monday.

Nides is not expected to face significant opposition to being confirmed and has been holding talks with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle in preparation for the hearing, sources familiar told The Times of Israel.

He is not expected to make the trip to Israel until November though and former Jerusalem Consul General Michael Ratney will continue heading the US mission in Israel in the interim.

Nides is a former deputy secretary of state for management and resources, who most recently served as managing director and vice-chairman of Morgan Stanley. His nomination was announced in June.

As deputy secretary of state, Nides built effective working relationships with several Israeli officials and played a key role in the Obama administration’s approval of an extension on loan guarantees for Israel worth billions of dollars. He also helped carry out Obama’s policy against congressional efforts to limit US support for the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNWRA) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

Born in 1961 to a Jewish family in Duluth, Minnesota, Nides is a banking executive and if confirmed, would bring both government and private sector experience to the post.

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