Pompeo avoids rebuke in close Senate committee vote

Frederick Owens
April 25, 2018

Sen. Rand Paul is catching flak from his base over his decision to support Mike Pompeo for secretary of state despite repeated assertions that he would not, the Washington Examiner reports.

Pompeo now serves as director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

McConnell is making the upbeat assessment after two more Democratic senators announced support for Pompeo, now the Central Intelligence Agency director, despite steep opposition expected Monday evening at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. "I strongly believe that a successful, peaceful outcome will require a comprehensive strategy and a full team on the field, including an effective State Department, to leverage all available tools".

"As you know, with the success of what will hopefully soon be Secretary of State Pompeo, everybody was very surprised. I believe Director Pompeo is capable of advancing USA interests and leading the State Department, and I will support his nomination".

Neither Manchin nor Donnelly is on the panel, but their votes will help push Pompeo's nomination before the full Senate vote expected later this week.

Democrats have raised several objections to Pompeo's nomination, arguing that his previous statements favoring the use of force over diplomatic options, his record of controversial quips about American Muslims and same-sex marriage, and concerns that he would not challenge Trump on matters of foreign policy made him unfit to serve as secretary of state.

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Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker, R-Tenn., and Sen.

By the end of the week, Pompeo will nearly certainly be confirmed as secretary of state.

Conservative activists and the White House mounted a months-long campaign to pressure Democrats to either drop their opposition to Grenell or have McConnell hold a vote on his nomination, which costs valuable debate time on the floor of theSsenate. "The Dems will not approve hundreds of good people..."

Coons said that he still meant to vote against Pompeo's nomination on the Senate floor. But because of a quirk in the Senate rules, the panel could not send its recommendation to the full Senate, as one of those 11 Republicans - Sen.

Ben Cardin, D-Md., confer before the vote on President Donald Trump's nominee for secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, who has faced considerable opposition before the panel, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Monday, April 23, 2018.

Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., who was among the last Democrats on the foreign relations panel to announce his no vote, said he is concerned that Pompeo "will embolden, rather than moderate or restrain" Trump's "most belligerent and risky instincts". But the rare rebuke from the panel, even after Pompeo's recent visit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, would be the first time in years a nominee for the high-level Cabinet position did not receive a favorable vote. Bob Corker, blames partisan politics for opposition to Pompeo, saying the Central Intelligence Agency chief is just as qualified as past nominees for secretary of state.

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