Pompeo Gets a Grilling on the Hill

In prepared remarks ahead of Thursday's confirmation hearing, Pompeo is set to explain to members on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that he is no "warmonger" or "hawk" that many claim him to be.

"With this oath, I would commit to defend the exceptionalism enshrined in our Constitution, which provides for our obligation to engage in diplomacy and model the very best of America to the world", he told lawmakers.

Before the hearing started, the president wished Pompeo "good luck" Thursday morning on Twitter.

"I cooperated", Pompeo told Sen.

Some senators are planning to ask Pompeo about his stated skepticism about climate change and opposition to the Paris climate agreement.

Pompeo is a known entity for Trump, someone who briefed the president almost daily and shares a gung ho attitude towards Iran. Pompeo said that his record showed he had treated all Central Intelligence Agency officers with dignity and respect, and that he would do the same at the State Department.

Asked by Democratic Sen.

"Will you be working from crisis to crisis?"

"If there's ever one where you put politics aside, this is it", Mr. Burr said.

In July 2017, Pompeo said that American interests would likely be harmed if Syrian President Bashar Assad, Tehran's closest ally, remained in power.

"They have really been a great help to us at the border with North Korea", Trump said of China. "To do that, we need a strong diplomatic corps, and an aid that complements and enhances our foreign policy". "Along with UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, Defense Secretary James Mattis and National Security Advisor John Bolton, Director Pompeo will implement Trump's primary foreign policy vision which is peace through strength".

Trump has reportedly been mulling whether to fire Rosenstein, who is overseeing special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE's investigation into Russian interference. According to The Post, Coats later discussed the meeting and his conversation with Trump with other officials and told them Trump had suggested he intervene with Comey and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Pompeo answered, "I don't recall".

The CIA chief was also peppered with questions regarding his personal views on national security policies, particularly as they relate to North Korea and Iran. "Militarily, it continues its provocation in the South and East China seas, in cyberspace, and even in outer space", Pompeo said.

This "casts doubt upon the commitment to peace among adherents of the Muslim faith" and "has made these Islamic leaders across America potentially complicit in these acts", he said. In recent briefings with State Department staffers "they all, to a person, expressed a hope to be empowered in their roles, and to have a clear understanding of the President's mission", he said.

I want to fix this deal; that's the objective.

Pompeo is preparing to use the hearing to modify his hawkish reputation, and recast his relationship with senators anxious about steps he might take in dealing with a number of consequential choices and crises, including North Korea and Iran.

"We had a bad fellow in Kansas named Fred Phelps", Pompeo told Booker in response to a question about his previous statements against Muslims. Thursday was no exception.

  • Leroy Wright