Hollywood Obama Backer Gets Ambassador Nod

Image: Hollywood Obama Backer Gets Ambassador Nod Colleen and Bradley Bell.

Friday, 08 Nov 2013 11:42 AM

By Courtney Coren

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Soap opera producer and top campaign bundler for President Barack Obama has been nominated for ambassador to Hungary, continuing a trend of political appointees to ambassador posts.

Colleen Bradley Bell, of Bell-Phillip Television Productions, helped raise more than $500,000 for Obama's 2012 presidential campaign, his campaign reported, according to Variety. However, The New York Times has the total number at $2.1 Million.

The White House announced her nomination as ambassador to Hungary Tuesday, according to the Hollywood Reporter. She will still need to be confirmed by the Senate.

She and her husband, Bradley Bell, hosted a fundraising event for Obama's presidential campaign in January 2012 in their Los Angeles area home. The event was co-sponsored by Will Ferrell.

Bell's production company is behind "The Bold and the Beautiful" on CBS. Her husband is the co-creator and writer for the soap opera.

The Los Angeles Times reported that Obama's second-term ambassador nominations are more political than usual — at a record high of 56 percent compared with the usual 30 percent since the Reagan Administration.

The Times noted that at least half of those nominated to diplomatic posts played significant fundraising roles in his presidential campaign.

Other top fundraisers who were nominated for ambassadorships include John Emerson, former president of Capital Group Private Client Services, who has already been confirmed as ambassador to Germany, former HBO executive James Costos, who is serving in Spain, and political adviser Noah Mamet, who has been nominated as the ambassador to Argentina. All three raised over a million dollars for the president's re-election campaign.

The Washington Times notes that the increasing number of political donors who get ambassadorships comes after Obama pledged to end the pay-for-play environment in Washington.

Related Stories:
Obama Nominates Campaign Backers as Ambassadors
Obama Ambassador Nominee Faces Questions on IRS Scandal



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