Incoming White House chief of staff Ron Klein said earlier on Sunday that Biden intends to start unveiling his cabinet members on Tuesday. Blinken is expected to be among the first nominations, people familiar with the matter said, with Biden intending to signal that rebuilding America’s alliances is one of his top priorities.
Blinken served in the Obama administration as deputy secretary of state and senior deputy national security advisor. He also served as the National Security Adviser to Vice President Biden at the time.
At the time, he played a central role in much of the Obama administration’s foreign policy, including how it responded to the Russian incursion into Crimea in 2014, the raid that killed Osama bin Laden in 2011, and the fight against ISIS.
If confirmed by the Senate, Blinken would be tasked with repairing relations with close allies around the world, many of whom were alarmed by President Donald Trump’s confrontational style and his attempts to reshape the international responsibilities of the United States as part of his America First campaign. . The undertaking. The longtime foreign policy advisor will be required to address the State Department that has been drastically altered under Trump, including hiring staff for an organization that has been subject to a hiring freeze and fighting an unfounded view that Trump has pushed that the agency was part of a “deep state” working against Republican leader.
Before the Obama administration, Blinken served as the Democratic Staff Director for the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which Biden chaired.
During the Clinton administration, he served as a member of the National Security Council in the White House and held positions as special assistant to the president, senior director of European affairs, and senior director of speech writing and then strategic planning. He was the writer of foreign policy speeches for Clinton.
Former diplomat James Melville told CNN he was elated when he saw the news of Biden’s decision.
“Tony was an awesome Deputy Secretary. He’s smart, kind and he’s going to be an amazing, incredibly effective leader for what must be one of the most mega-tasks in diplomacy, cleaning up the stables after the worst president and foreign secretary we have ever been.”
A current State Department official told CNN that Biden “could not have chosen a stronger option to demonstrate his commitment to diplomacy and the diplomatic corps, let alone the partnerships and alliances that make us strong.”
It was Senator Chris Coons of Delaware and former UN Ambassador and National Security Adviser Susan Rice Among the other contenders for this position.
Jake Sullivan, a former Obama administration official, is the main contender for the National Security Adviser position.
Linda Thomas Greenfield is the main contender for the UN ambassadorial position, sources familiar with the matter told CNN, which is expected to be announced on Tuesday.
Thomas Greenfield, an African American woman with a long career in the diplomatic service, previously served as assistant secretary for the Bureau of African Affairs. Choosing Thomas Greenfield will help Biden fulfill his pledge to build a diversified administration.
One source said that the transition team has already appointed advisers – known as Sherpas – to help direct the appointed cabinet members to the confirmation process.
This story has been updated with additional reports.
CNN’s Jennifer Hansler contributed to this report.