Obama taps finance director as envoy to Denmark

President Barack Obama is tapping his former campaign finance chairman, an HBO executive and the head of a major Catholic charity to be U.S. ambassadors.

FILE - In this May 21, 2013 file photo, President Barack Obama speaks in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama is tapping his former campaign finance chairman, an HBO executive and the head of a major Catholic charity to be U.S. ambassadors.

The White House says Obama has chosen Rufus Gifford to be ambassador to Denmark. Gifford ran Obama's 2012 fundraising operations and is the Democratic National Committee's former finance chairman.

Two bundlers and major donors to Obama's re-election also got European posts. Obama is nominating James Costos as his envoy to Spain and John Emerson as his envoy to Germany.

Ken Hackett, who stepped down last year as the head of Catholic Relief Services, is Obama's pick to be the U.S. emissary to the Vatican.

Obama also tapped two career diplomats for postings in Brazil and Ethiopia. The Senate must confirm all the nominations.


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