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U.S. Senate Approves Brownback for Ambassador Post on Narrow Vote

On a narrow vote, the U.S. Senate confirmed Kansas Governor Sam Brownback as ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, a post in the U.S. State Department.

The U.S. Senate has narrowly approved the nomination of Kansas Governor Sam Brownback for a post in the Trump administration.  The Senate was tied at 49 when Vice President Mike Pence cast the deciding vote in Brownback's favor.

Brownback's resignation as governor is imminent, as he will soon assume the role as U.S. ambassador for international religious freedom in the U.S. State Department.  Once Brownback officially resigns, Lt. Governor Jeff Colyer will be sworn in as the next governor of Kansas. 

More on Governor Brownback's confirmation from Jim McLean of the Kansas News Service.

(AP version)

Vice President's Vote Wins Kansas Governor's Confirmation

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Senate has confirmed Kansas Governor Sam Brownback as ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, giving his home state a new leader.  Vice President Mike Pence had to cast the deciding vote so that the Republican governor's nomination by President Donald Trump could be approved on a 50-49 party-line vote.  Brownback planned to resign as governor, but his office in Topeka was not expected to release the details until Thursday. His departure will automatically elevate fellow Republican Lt. Governor Jeff Colyer to governor.  Brownback tweeted his thanks to Trump, Pence and the senators who supported him, saying he's looking forward to starting in the job.  Colyer said he thinks Brownback will serve in his new position wisely.  But Tom Witt of the LGBT-rights group Equality Kansas expressed strong disappointment.

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