The White House had been rumored to be planning the move since May, but officially announced it Friday, touting Garcetti’s eight years as LA mayor, 12 years on city council and 12 years as a Navy Reserve intelligence officer.
“I am honored to accept his nomination to serve in this role,” Garcetti tweeted in response.
In addition to his time in LA politics, Garcetti had also co-chaired Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign, even arguing in a Fox News op-ed last summer that then-candidate Biden was “uniquely qualified” to lead the U.S. out of the coronavirus pandemic.
The mayor had previously asked to be removed from Cabinet consideration at the height of the U.S. coronavirus crisis last year. India is currently facing a surge in COVID-19 deaths and new infections.
“I have committed my life to service –– as an activist, as a teacher, as a naval officer, as a public servant, and if confirmed, next as an ambassador,” he wrote in a follow-up tweet. “Part of that commitment means that when your nation calls, you answer that call.”
He added that he believed taking the job would “help strengthen Los Angeles’ place on the world stage.”
Garcetti’s accomplishments in LA include expanding the city’s light rail service and his handling of the coronavirus pandemic – but he’s been skewered by critics over his failure to solve its homelessness crisis.
Additionally, a former aide is being sued for allegedly sexually harassing one of his bodyguards while the mayor laughed it off, a claim he has denied. And one of his former deputy mayors is currently facing federal corruption charges.
Other ambassador nominees the White House announced Friday are Denise Campbell Bauer, a Democratic fundraiser for France and Monaco; Peter Haas, a longtime foreign service officer, for Bangladesh; and Bernadette Meehan, an Obama-era national security aide, for Chile.
The nominations will head to the Senate for confirmation.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.