Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Former Governor Gary Locke confirmed as new Secretary of Commerce

Congratulations to Governor Locke!
The U.S. Senate voted on Tuesday to approve the nomination of former Washington state Governor Gary Locke to be U.S. commerce secretary, putting a Chinese-American in the job for the first time.

Locke, President Barack Obama's third nominee for the post, has promised to focus on "creating the jobs of the future" and enforcing U.S. laws to counter unfair foreign trade practices.
Locke was confirmed on a unanimous voice vote, so there is no roll call to share. He joins Dr. Jane Lubchenco (NOAA Administrator) as the second high profile Northwesterner as the Department of Commerce.

In a news release, Locke said he was "honored to take on this challenge and will work every day to make the Commerce Department an engine for improving our competitiveness, encouraging innovation and creating jobs."

He is the United States' first Chinese American Commerce Secretary and its thirty sixth overall. (The Department of Commerce, originally the Department of Commerce & Labor, celebrated its centennial six years ago).

The biography included with the Department of Commerce's news release notes that Locke has led a number of trade missions to countries on three different continents, and that Washington gained 280,000 jobs while he was governor.

I'll update this post with reaction from Governor Chris Gregoire, Senator Murray, and Senator Cantwell once their offices release statements.


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