President Donald Trump on Monday designated U.S. Ambassador to Belgium Ronald Gidwitz as U.S. Acting Representative to the European Union, replacing ousted Gordon Sondland.
Sondland, a key witness in the House impeachment hearings, was fired Feb. 7 from his role, barely 48 hours after Trump was acquitted by the Senate in his impeachment trial.
He was deeply involved in the effort to pressure Ukraine to announce probes into Trump's Democratic rivals, testifying "we followed the president's orders" and "everyone was in the loop."
Gidwitz was appointed to his role in 2018. He worked as Trump's campaign finance chair for Illinois in the 2016 presidential campaign.
"In his capacity as Acting Representative, Amb. Gidwitz will advance a strong U.S.-EU partnership, especially in achieving a speedy recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, while promoting our shared interests and values across the globe," Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement released Monday.
"Amb. Gidwitz will continue serving as U.S. Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Kingdom of Belgium, strengthening our bilateral economic and security relationship to the benefit of both nations."
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