Published: Wed, April 25, 2018

Pompeo Is In, Courtesy Of Rand Paul

Pompeo Is In, Courtesy Of Rand Paul

The vote of approval by 11 to 9 from the Senate's Republican-led Foreign Relations committee allowed Trump to avoid an embarrassing setback as he sought to replace Rex Tillerson, the secretary of state he fired in March.

"The other concern I heard was that they're concerned that he'll be too focused on the use of force rather than diplomacy and I would just direct you to his testimony before the committee", Mr. Portman, Ohio Republican, said on Fox News.

At his confirmation hearing this month, Pompeo said he would work to defend gay rights around the world, to work to rescue the Iran nuclear deal and to reverse the administration's marginalization of American diplomats under his predecessor.

If Pompeo secures more votes for his confirmation, "it could suggest marginally greater confidence from the Senate", Rathke continued. The senator also thought Pompeo disagreed with the president's stated belief that "the Iraq War was a mistake".

Paul, who had expressed reservations about Pompeo's hawkishness when it comes to military action overseas, was the best hope for defeating Pompeo, as a "no" vote from the Kentucky senator would have delivered an unfavorable recommendation and might have made some Republicans rethink their position.

Pompeo's nomination will now proceed to a vote by the complete Senate, where the support of at least three Democrats guarantees its passage.

Last year, 14 Democrats voted to confirm Pompeo as Central Intelligence Agency director, but several have already stated they will not back him to serve as secretary of state.


Donnelly met with Pompeo on April 10 to discuss the nomination.

U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) cited Pompeo's anti-LGBT and anti-Muslim comments as among the reasons he voted against his nomination.

And, rather than simply attack Paul when the Kentucky Republican voiced his concerns about the hawkishness of Pompeo on national security and foreign policy matters, Trump praised Paul publicly and worked to convince him privately.

On Monday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee recommended the pro-life conservative for the position after a narrow vote, the AP reports.

"In Mike Pompeo, the United States will have a chief diplomat who enjoys the total confidence of the president, and who's uniquely qualified to reinvigorate our Foreign Service and represent our interests overseas", McConnell said. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Sen. Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, Joe Donnelly of IN, and Joe Manchin of West Virginia said they would vote yes.

Pompeo secretly travelled to Pyongyang in late March to meet with Kim to lay the groundwork for the meeting, which could take place in early June. The vote came after widespread speculation that the former Kansas Congressman would not receive a favorable recommendation.

At the urging of panel chairman Bob Corker, R-Tenn., Democratic Sen.

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