Obama Sets Record With Appointments for Political Friends

Friday, 02 Aug 2013 12:39 PM

By Lisa Barron

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President Barack Obama has rewarded more of his donors and supporters with top diplomatic posts than any previous president, reports The Hill.

Three more major fundraisers were named to top dimplomatic posts this week, making at least 20 political supporters of the president who have been named to foreign posts.

Obama on Thursday nominated Dwight Bush to be the U.S. ambassador to Morocco. Bush and his wife reportedly donated more than $70,000 to the president's re-election campaign in 2012, hosted a $17,900-a-plate fundraiser at their home in Washington, D.C., and bundled more than $500,000 in contributions for Obama's re-election efforts.

The president also nominated Pamela Hamamoto as U.S. representative to the United Nations in Geneva. Hamamoto raised more than $500,000 for Obama's 2012 campaign and was a classmate of the president growing up in Hawaii

He also nominated Noah Mamet as the next ambassador to Argentina. Mamet has reportedly bundled nearly $1.75 million for the president since 2007.

In all, according to The Hill, Obama has rewarded at least 20 of his political allies with ambassador posts.

As of June 28, the publication reported, 32.2 percent of the president's ambassadorial appointments had gone to political supporters, according to the American Foreign Service Association, compared to 30.02 percent under George W. Bush, 27.82 percent under Bill Clinton, and 31.30 percent under George H.W. Bush.

The association said in a statement after Obama's re-election, "Now is the time to end the spoils system and the de facto 'three-year rental' of ambassadorships. The United States is alone in this practice; no other major democracy routinely appoints non-diplomats to serve as enjoys to other countries."

Internal financial documents obtained by the New York Times also suggest the price per post could be at an all-time high.



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