Senate confirms Mike Pompeo as 70th secretary of state

30 April, 2018, 11:54 | Author: Charlene Valdez
  • Mike Pompeo and Richard Grenell

"... Shortly after the vote at the Capitol, Mr. Pompeo went across the street to the Supreme Court, where he was sworn in by Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr".

For Pompeo, a long list of pressing issues awaits, including a decision on the Iran nuclear deal, Trump's upcoming summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and ongoing disagreements in the White House about the future United States role in Syria.

Trump added that the two spoke for more than an hour and that there were "incredible pictures of the two talking and meeting".

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Former CIA Director, Mike Pompeo has on Thursday, been sworn in as America's 70th secretary of state after a bruising battle over his hardliner image.

If confirmed, Pompeo will replace Rex Tillerson, the former Exxon Mobil CEO fired by President Donald Trump on Twitter last month.

Six Democrats and one Independent voted to confirm Pompeo: Heitkamp, Donnelly, Manchin, McCaskill, Jones, Nelson, and King (I).

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Pompeo faced unprecedented opposition to his becoming the nation's top diplomat - many Democrats who just previous year voted to confirm him as Central Intelligence Agency director publicly opposed him as the next secretary of state.

But ultimately, the 54-year-old West Point graduate and former congressman beat back critics, easily winning Senate confirmation in a 57-42 vote. Pompeo travelled to Pyongyang over Easter after being nominated for secretary of state and met with Kim ahead of the planned summit with Trump, expected in late May or June. He's expected to have an easier time in the full Senate, though the tally will still likely be close.

Pompeo is expected to be sworn in nearly immediately.

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In Brussels, Pompeo will attend a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation foreign ministers summit and meet with the top diplomats from Turkey and Italy.

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