Capito, Blunt, Risch

Executive Session (Pompeo Nomination)

Senator Capito: (1:28 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the nomination of Mike Pompeo to be Secretary of State.
    • "They were a result of the Senate's long tradition of confirming qualified nominees to represent the United States on the world stage and to give the president - to give the president on this very crucial position secretary of state, to give the president his voice or her voice in the future to around the world in the diplomatic realm. But when it comes to the confirmation of this nominee, Mike Pompeo, many of my colleagues have seemed way too ready to brush aside this long-held tradition. The reason for this? Well, I think, Mr. President, you would agree with me, it's pretty obvious the reason, and that's just flat out partisanship. Partisanship is the only explanation because it certainly could not be and is not and will not be the nominee's qualifications."


Senator Blunt: (1:44 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the nomination of Mike Pompeo to be Secretary of State.
    • "It's a critically important time for the country. I think we heard this morning in the joint session from the president of France the importance of our country and those who agree with our defense of freedom and security to stand up for that. There are threats all over the globe, and certainly everybody realizes that Mike Pompeo, the current director of the C.I.A., would have the knowledge he needs to do the job. He clearly has the experience he needs to do the job, and he has the support of the president, who he would be representing. Historically, this body until recent years always dealt with foreign policy as if we were sure that bipartisanship starts at the water's edge, partisanship ends at the water's edge."
  • Spoke on Senate Rules and Procedure.
    • "But the other difference with President Obama's nominees is we didn't stop all the work in the Senate during the 60 days that we're having hearings, getting the nomination ready to the floor. You didn't do exactly what we're doing right now, which says we're going to fully take advantage of every right the minority has to insist on debate. The only thing missing in that debate is the debate. So at the rate we're going, it would take more than nine years to confirm all of the president's nominees. This would be nine years of his four-year term."


Senator Risch: (2:10 p.m.)

  • Spoke on the nomination of Mike Pompeo to be Secretary of State.
    • "Now, some of my colleagues who are opposed to Director Pompeo argue that he will not deliver tough messages to the president or outline all of the policy options. They argue that Director Pompeo is a hawk who would prefer armed conflict to diplomacy. I find these comments disappointing. That has not been my personal experience with Director Pompeo. In addition, military officers are frequently the last ones to seek a military solution to a foreign policy challenge because they know firsthand the cost of war. On the other hand, they also know that without strength, no amount of diplomacy will be able to stop an authoritarian dictator."