Published: Fri, April 13, 2018
Worldwide | By Sean Reid

Pompeo Says He's Ready To Push Back Against Kremlin

Pompeo Says He's Ready To Push Back Against Kremlin

Senator Cory Booker demanded answers from Secretary of State nominee Mike Pompeo about his past views on LGBT rights during confirmation hearings today.

Pompeo said he had been interviewed by Mueller, and is cooperating with special counsel. But he said the president had never asked him to do anything improper.

"I think it's most important that while these investigations continue, I not speak to the conversations I have had with the various investigative bodies".

Pompeo is a known entity for Trump, someone who briefed the president almost daily and shares a gung ho attitude towards Iran.

While lawmakers repeatedly returned to the question of Russian Federation and the Mueller probe, there were ample questions about the myriad foreign policy challenges facing the U.S., all of which would nearly immediately demand Pompeo's attention as secretary. It depends clearly if we're close.

But he says he's not advocating regime change. Pompeo said he would work quickly in his new role to fill the gaps. Rand Paul of Kentucky, has also said he is voting "no".

"It is the last resort, it must always be so".

Still, he acknowledged that Iran, technically speaking, is not violating the terms of the 2015 accord between the U.S., Iran and other world powers, adding: "I have seen no evidence that they are not in compliance".

Mr Pompeo also took a hard line on Russian Federation.

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.

Pompeo was present at a March 22, 2017 meeting with Trump and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, when Trump reportedly asked Coats if he could step in and ask then-FBI director James Comey to get the bureau to back off its investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Former DoD and Central Intelligence Agency chief Leon Panetta told MSNBC this morning that Trump's withdrawal comments were "not something that the president should have said with regards to the status of American forces because if we're going to be able to have some kind of influence in Syria, and it is a chaotic situation, it is important for the United States to have a presence there and to indicate that we have a role to play". "I intend to achieve the president's policy by diplomacy rather than by sending our young men and women to war", he said.

"Even after May 12, there's still much diplomatic work to be done", Pompeo noted. 'The list of actions that this administration has taken, I'm happy to walk through each of them, but I don't want to take up more time.

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He confirmed that Russian Federation interfered in the 2016 presidential election, and said the USA has an obligation to help Ukraine defend its sovereignty.

Headed to be the top American diplomat in the next few week, as his nomination moves through the legislative process, Pompeo told members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that couched in all of global challenges are opportunities.

"Did he ask you to do anything as it relates to that investigation?" asked Menendez.

US CIA Director Mike Pompeo has called for strict measures against what he called a "failed state" of Syria amid claims of chemical attack in Douma, blamed on Damascus by Washington and its allies.

"Each of those tools that Vladimir Putin is using, we need to do our best to make sure he doesn't succeed", Pompeo said.

On Russia, Pompeo was grilled by Sen.

Pompeo is answering questions at his Senate confirmation hearing Thursday.

Echoing recent statements from Trump and the White House, Pompeo also said that while negotiations are taking place, the maximum pressure campaign must continue.

To the dismay of some Democratic lawmakers, Pompeo equivocated when asked about climate change - acknowledging it is occurring but saying only that it's "likely" that humans are contributing to it. But many Democrats on the panel said they are concerned he might be missing a critical attribute for the job: a willingness to stand up to Trump when the situation requires it.

Pompeo: "Senator, I'm going to give you the same answer I just gave you previously".

The most senior lawmakers on the committee both touched on Pompeo's relationship with Trump, and specifically on the question of whether he will stand up to the President. Yet he dodged repeatedly when Democrats tried to pin him down on President Donald Trump's handling of the special investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

"What is your real plan?" Bob Corker, echoed those concerns.

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