Coons going to Liberian inauguration

Delaware’s junior senator, Democrat Chris Coons, is joining the U.S. delegation to the Monday inauguration of Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Africa’s first female president and one of three recipients of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize.

Coons is the chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on African Affairs and has made Africa one of his primary concerns on Capitol Hill. (In fact, his college-days essay about his Kenyan conversion to a “bearded Marxist” — you have to read the essay to understand the sobriquet — provided his first bit of controversy on the national stage.)

You can hear an hourlong interview with Coons conducted by WHYY’s Marty Moss-Coane, in which he talks about his Peace Corps experience and concern for Africa, here. (Marty also interviewed the other Liberian woman who shared the Nobel Peace Prize with President Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee, in September; that interview is here.)

Coons is joining Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as part of the official U.S. delegation to the inauguration of President Sirleaf. He leaves Sunday for the inauguration Monday. And on Wednesday, he is hosting an Opportunity: Africa conference at the University of Delaware in Wilmington.

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