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April 15, 2011

Senate Confirms Johnson Cook for Religious Freedom Ambassador

The Senate has confirmed Suzan D. Johnson Cook to be ambassador at large for international religious freedom.

President Obama waited until June 2010 to send a nomination to the Senate, and then the Senate then failed to act. Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) put a hold on the nomination, effectively vetoing it, according to Samuel G. Freedman of the New York Times.

The Obama administration submitted her nomination again in February. Last month, a group of faith leaders sent a letter to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee urging them to emphasize religious freedom in foreign policy.

Johnson Cook, also known as "Dr. Sujay," retired in 2009 as pastor of Bronx Christian Fellowship Church. Last week, she compared herself to British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. "This will go down in the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest nomination," she said at a dinner held last week. "But we thank God to just be in the number."