President Joe Biden nominated former Arizona Republican Congressman Jeff Flake to serve as ambassador to Turkey.

The White House announced the nomination in a statement Tuesday and Flake wrote in a blog post that he is grateful for the opportunity and “eager to get to know the extraordinary people of Turkey.”

“If confirmed by the Senate, I will be pleased to join a strong, experienced and capable team representing U.S. interests abroad,” Flake wrote. “Having served in both the U.S. House and Senate, I understand and appreciate the role Congress plays in U.S. foreign policy and I look forward to that partnership.”

In 2017, Flake announced he would not seek re-election in the Senate the following year after 18 years representing Arizona in Congress while alluding to his criticisms of former President Donald Trump stating that “casual undermining of our democratic norms and ideals” must never be regarded as normal.

Flake was also one of three Republicans censured by the Arizona GOP in January as the party suggested he join the Democratic Party after saying he “condemned the Republican Party, rejected populism and rejected the interests of the American people over globalist interests.”

While in Congress Flake served on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

In an April phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President Joe Biden said he wanted a “constructive bilateral relationship” between the two countries while becoming the first U.S. president in four decades to use the term “genocide” to describe the 1915 slaughter of Armenians by the Ottoman Empire.

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