U.S. Senate leaders have agreed to nominate West Virginia lawyer Carte Goodwin to a two-year seat on a panel studying trade relations between the U.S. and China.

Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin and Jay Rockefeller made the announcement Thursday.

Goodwin briefly held the Senate seat of the late Robert C. Byrd, until West Virginia’s special election sent Manchin to take over. Goodwin was also Manchin’s legal counsel in the governor’s office.

The United States-China Economic Security Review Commission helps determine whether trade issues have implications for the U.S. economy or national security.

Rockefeller says Goodwin has a knack for stripping away rhetoric and getting to the facts. He also understands how outsourcing and a decline in manufacturing have hurt states like West Virginia.

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