Richardson Moving From U.N. To Energy Department
Holbrooke to be nominated for U.N. post
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, June 17) -- U.N. Ambassador Bill Richardson will be nominated Thursday to be the new secretary of energy, CNN has confirmed.
At the same time, President Bill Clinton will nominate Richard Holbrooke, the architect of the Bosnia peace accords, to replace Richardson as the top U.S. representative at the United Nations.
The current energy secretary, Federico Pena, is stepping down to return to the private sector.
Richardson, 50, is a former Democratic congressman from New Mexico. His appointment as energy secretary had been rumored for several weeks, and he had reportedly been considering whether the post might help him with any future political races in his home state.
The Department of Energy runs the nation's nuclear research efforts, and a number of major nuclear facilities are located in New Mexico.
Richardson was returning late Wednesday from a trip to a drug conference in Rome. His spokesman declined comment on the possible appointment but noted that Richardson had no further U.N.-related travel plans.
Holbrooke, 57, is a former assistant secretary of state for European affairs. He was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for his role in brokering the Dayton peace accords that ended Bosnia's civil war.
Holbrooke left the State Department in 1996 to take a job in international banking. But he has been repeatedly pressed into service by the Clinton administration as a special envoy to various hot spots.
Holbrooke is currently the U.S. point man in efforts to resolve the dispute between Greece and Turkey over Cyprus. Last month, he was sent to the Balkans to find a diplomatic resolution to the violence in Kosovo.
Both nominations require Senate confirmation.
CNN Senior White House Correspondent Wolf Blitzer contributed to this report.