Secretary of State Nominee Mike Pompeo Testifies at Senate Hearing

Glen Norman
April 13, 2018

Donald Trump's nominee for secretary of state vowed to make the USA a world leader in global diplomacy and help a demoralised state department find "its swagger once again" during his confirmation hearing on Thursday.

He told members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that he would restore "swagger" to a State Department left in tatters by Rex Tillerson, and strengthen relations with U.S. partners left ragged after the tumultuous first year of President Donald Trump's administration.

Pompeo was responding to a line of questioning by Sen. "I think your background could not be better to serve in this capacity". Pompeo's views on global issues are well known - he was questioned extensively by senators for his confirmation to run the Central Intelligence Agency - but Democratic senators have raised questions about his fitness to be top diplomat, given his hawkish views and past comments about minorities.

"Those decisions are weighty".

"The U.S. and the global community had a lot of powerful non-military options to raise the cost to Russian Federation and make it more willing to stop killing Ukrainians", NATO expert Jorge Benitez of the Atlantic Council told Business Insider. That is exactly why our Constitution gives that power explicitly to Congress. Rand Paul during his confirmation hearing.

"In fact, Madison wrote very specifically". He did say that he had met and spoken with Mueller nonetheless declined to talk regarding the investigation and totally different questions related to the probe.

So the fact that we have in the past done this doesn't make it Constitutional. He said he worries the nominee would check the president's natural instincts on foreign policy. Lawmakers are concerned the president may seek Mueller's ouster to try to shut down the investigation, and the White House has said it believes Trump does have the authority to fire him if desired. "In the event that we conclude that we can't fix this deal, that these serious shortcomings that you, Senator Cardin yourself, have identified, then the president is going to be given best advice".

"(The goal) is to develop an agreement with the North Korean leadership such that the North Korean leadership will step away from its effort to hold America at risk with nuclear weapons, completely and verifiably", Pompeo said.

"It sounds like you say it's time to stay ..." "We need a thoughtful, long-term strategy that prevents that from taking place". We did. We literally did win.

"We can not let the nuclear file prevent us from acting against Iran's cyber efforts or its attempts to provide missiles to the Houthis to attack Saudi Arabia and Americans who travel there".

"(There is) a Chinese government that is intent on expanding their capacity to have not only economic influence on those countries, but using that economic tool to achieve political influence in those countries as well", Pompeo said.

Pompeo said the ongoing involvement in Afghanistan is "humble in its mission". "He wants fewer American citizens in Syria".

He added that the State department ought to be involved in combatting climate change's national security challenges, and that he didn't "take any fault" in commitments made in a report by the intelligence services earlier this year which warned of the threats of climate change. He referenced Trump's past statements about wanting to bring the troops home. "He said, 'It is time to get out of Afghanistan". Coons asked whether Pompeo would feel obligated to resign in protest if Donald Trump fired Robert Mueller.

"We'd like to have partner forces there to achieve the same objectives", he said.

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