With the U.S. Senate split, Vice President Mike Pence cast a tie-breaking vote this (WED) afternoon to advance Kansas Governor Sam Brownback’s nomination for a post in Trump's State Department.
A final vote to confirm Brownback as religious freedom ambassador will now likely happen by the end of this week. Brownback has repeatedly said he will remain as governor until his confirmation is finalized.
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The U.S. Senate has taken a key step toward confirming Kansas Governor Sam Brownback's nomination for an ambassador's post. After senators voted 49-49 today (WED), Vice President Mike Pence broke the tie in Brownback's favor. The vote ended debate on Brownback's nomination by President Donald Trump to be U.S. ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom. The action starts a 30-hour clock on holding a final vote, though it could come sooner. Trump first nominated Brownback for the ambassador's post in July but Democrats and LGBT groups opposed his appointment. In 2015, Brownback rescinded an executive order from a previous Democratic governor banning discrimination in state hiring and employment against LGBT individuals. Brownback would resign as governor if he is confirmed. Republican Lt. Governor Jeff Colyer would be elevated to governor.