Mike Pompeo Sworn In as Secretary of State

27 April, 2018, 00:49 | Author: Gregory Stephens
  • U.S. Senator Doug Jones

Soon Pompeo will be sworn in. He immediately headed to Andrews Air Force Base to fly to Brussels. ET, State Department Spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement.

As secretary of state, Mr. Pompeo will also have to navigate the rivalries within the Trump administration.

The final votes are in and Mike Pompeo has now been confirmed as Secretary of State. Trump dispatched Pompeo to Pyongyang over Easter, and as secretary it is anticipated he will be intimately involved in the summit and any talks that ensue. President Trump is facing some of the most consequential foreign policy decisions in a generation - dealing with Syria, the fight against ISIS, the campaign to counter Iran, our continuing military engagement in Afghanistan and Iraq, and attempts to denuclearize North Korea. The United States issued several rounds of sanctions against Russian Federation.

Senators voted 57-42, just over the simple majority needed for approval by the chamber.

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito administered the oath at 2:00 pm. Pompeo, in a statement relayed by the State Department, said he was "delighted" to serve as America's top diplomat.

"I'm looking forward to serving the American people and getting to work right away", he added. The White House had pushed for lawmakers to confirm Pompeo by Thursday so he could head to a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation meeting in Brussels on Friday. "I received confirmation that Director Pompeo agrees with President Trump".

In those and other matters, Pompeo is expected to strike a dramatically different tone with Trump than his predecessor, Rex Tillerson, who had a testy relationship with the president that often left them publicly at odds. "Need more Republicans!" Trump tweeted.

Trump, while congratulating Pompeo, said, "Having a patriot of Mikes enormous talent, energy, and intellect leading the Department of State will be an incredible asset for our country at this critical time in history".


Trump said Pompeo has his trust and support.

The announcement came amid an intense pressure campaign by the White House and spared Pompeo the dubious distinction of being the first secretary of State nominee since at least 1925 to fail to win over the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who had threatened to torpedo his confirmation, that he has learned important lessons from America's foreign policy blunders during the last two decades.

Despite his conservative religious background, he also insisted his record at the Central Intelligence Agency was one of openness toward Muslim and gay and lesbian employees, though a number of Democrats said he was not convincing. GOP Sen. John McCain of Arizona, who is being treated for cancer, was absent. A former U.S. Congressman from Kansas, Pompeo has a long record of supporting pro-life legislation.

Trump and Kim Jong Un are expected to meet sometime in late May or June. While that meeting didn't seem to change things, Trump kept at it with Paul - understanding, rightly, that an unfavorable report out of the Foreign Relations committee could endanger Pompeo's chances at confirmation by the full Senate.

Yet his opponents warned that his hawkish foreign policy views and negative comments about gay marriage and Muslims made him ill-equipped to serve as a diplomat or to represent the USA on the world stage.

Past secretaries of state, including Condoleezza Rice, John Kerry, and Hillary Clinton have breezed through their respective confirmations.

"From North Korea's nuclear threats to Iran's aggression, Mike's confirmation as Secretary of State comes at a critical time for US foreign policy", said Ed Royce (R-CA), the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

While in Congress, Pompeo was an outspoken opponent of the Iran nuclear accord.

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