Biden announces UN General Assembly representatives for US

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President Biden on Sunday announced his five nominations for the U.S. representatives to the upcoming General Assembly of the United Nations (UN).

The nominees include Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), Rep. French Hill (R-Ark.), political consultant Janet Keller, former Georgia state Rep. Calvin Smyre (D) and Jeff Worthe, president of Worthe Real Estate Group.

Lee has represented California’s 12th District since 1998 and launched a bid earlier this year to replace retiring Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s (D-Calif.) seat in 2024. She currently serves as the co-chairwoman of the Policy and Steering Committee and also serves on the Budget Committee and Appropriations Committee.

Hill has served in Congress since January of 2015, representing Arkansas’s 2nd Congressional District. He serves as vice chairman of the House Financial Services Committee and as chairman of the new subcommittee on Digital Assets, Financial Technology, and Inclusion. He also serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Intelligence and the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

The president typically appoints one Democrat and one Republican to serve as U.S. representatives to the session, according to the Congressional Research Service. The nominees are then confirmed by a full Senate vote.

Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and James Risch (R-Idaho) served as the congressional representatives in the latest UN General Assembly session.

Biden’s other three nominees bring experience in local politics, public policy and property development.

Smyre served for 48 years in the Georgia House of Representatives. He is currently the president emeritus of the National Black Caucus of State Legislators and was formerly a member of the National Conference of State Legislators. In 2022, Biden nominated Smyre to serve as the U.S. ambassador to the Bahamas.

Keller has more than 30 years of politics and public policy experience, according to the White House. In 1990, she founded Keller Consultants, a consulting firm for candidates, campaigns and private clients, and later served on various leadership boards in California. She also advocated for survivors of disgraced sports doctor Larry Nassar.

Worthe is the president of the Worthe Real Estate Group, a Santa Monica-based firm specializing in the development and refurbishment of office properties in Los Angeles. According to the White House, Worthe also has supported charities and local organizations throughout Los Angeles.

The 78th annual session of the UN General Assembly will open Tuesday, and meetings and debates will begin Sept. 18. The General Assembly includes all 193 UN member states, including the U.S., which are each allowed one vote on key issues related to peace, security, admission of new members and the budget.

According to a statement from the UN Foundation, this year’s General Assembly will take place “at a time of unprecedented setbacks on global progress.”

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