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Marie Royce, wife of Republican Rep. Ed Royce, is being nominated by President Donald Trump to be assistant secretary of Educational and Cultural Affairs in the State Department, the White House announced Wednesday.

The Yorba Linda resident lists more than 30 years working for Fortune 500 companies and running her own business. She spent 12 years with the telecommunications giant Nokia, holding two posts as vice president. She’s taught in the business department of Cal Poly Pomona and holds an MBA from Georgetown University.

Ed Royce, who is chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, tweeted his congratulations.

“Her extensive experience in int’l business and trade make her uniquely qualified,” Royce wrote. “She will serve @StateDept and our country well.”

The appointment comes at a time when Trump is being criticized by adversaries for the unusually high number of vacancies at the State Department, with concerns that it may be hurting the United States’ international diplomacy.

Meanwhile, one the 12 challengers to Ed Royce’s reelection effort this year said the appointment — which needs Senate confirmation — makes it easier to link the congressman to the president in the campaign. While Royce easily won reelection in 2016, Trump lost the district and opponents see an opportunity to capture the support of those who don’t favor the president.

“Ed already votes with Trump 97% of the time,” said Democratic challenger Sam Jammal, indicating the running tally of House votes at fivethirtyeight.com. “I don’t know how he distances himself from Trump with his voting record and now spouse working for the guy. Best of luck to him on explaining how he will serve us, not The Donald.”

Dave Gilliard, longtime campaign consultant for the 13th-term congressman, brushed aside the attack.

“Ed Royce has a long and consistent voting record grounded in his principles, unrelated to who sits in the White House and (it is) well known to voters in his district, who have elected him by wide margins in every election,” Gilliard said.

There is precedent for spouses of Congress members to receive presidential appointments, including Trump’s choice of Elaine Chao — wife of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell — to be transportation secretary. Another high-profile example is Elizabeth Dole, who served secretary of transportation under Ronald Reagan and secretary of labor under George H. W. Bush while her husband, Bob Dole, was a senator.

“With those kinds of power couples, that sort of thing happens,” said Lori Cox Han, a political science professor at Chapman University. “I don’t know how common it is, but it’s not shockingly uncommon.”

A Royce spokesman said the congressman played no role in the president’s selection.

“Mrs. Royce secured this appointment entirely on her own merits,” he said.

Han said that the position is unlikely to give Marie Royce much face time with Trump.

“That’s not part of the inner circle,” she said.