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Confirmed: Governor to D.C. Next Week for Hearings on Future Job in China

DES MOINES, Iowa–Channel 13 has confirmed that Iowa Governor Terry Branstad will be in Washington, D.C. next week for his confirmation hearings to become the next U.S. Ambassador to China, according to sources familiar with the process.

The hearing is set for Tuesday before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Update: The governor’s office and the committee’s website confirmed the hearing late Tuesday afternoon. 

The committee is made up of 21 senators. Tennessee Republican Senator Bob Corker chairs the committee. Former Republican presidential candidates Marco Rubio of Florida and Rand Paul of Kentucky, along with former Democratic vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine also sit on the committee.

On Tuesday, senators can question Branstad on a variety of issues: his background, views on relations on China, etc. If the committee approves of Branstad for the position in China, it would refer the matter to the full senate. The senate would need a simple majority of members to confirm Branstad. Then the process would begin in Iowa for Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds to replace him and name her own choice to become lieutenant governor.

Branstad is scheduled to meet again with individual members of the committee this Wednesday and Thursday to answer questions they may have before the hearing Tuesday. He has already previously traveled to the nation’s capitol to meet with other senators on the committee.

Monday, Branstad grew animated in defense of his administration’s request for $150,000 in state appropriations for Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds’ transition to replace him. Last month, he confirmed that his daughter plans to move her family to China and serve as a teacher there.