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Secretary of State Nominee Mike Pompeo Testifies at Senate Hearing

Secretary of State Nominee Mike Pompeo Testifies at Senate Hearing”

Booker asked Pompeo about both of these stances during the hearing. But he ducked and dodged when asked whether he supports President Donald Trump's pounding criticism of the federal investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

Throughout the hearing, he drew a sharp contrast between himself and Tillerson, the former CEO of ExxonMobil who Trump unceremoniously fired last month.

As to the Taiwan Travel Act that took effect in March to bolster exchanges of visits by Taiwanese and USA officials at all levels, Pompeo gave no answer when Gardner asked him: "What level would you authorize State Department personnel to visit Taiwan?" Pompeo wouldn't say explicitly if he'd advocate a withdrawal if there's no fix by Trump's May 12 deadline, suggesting there could be an extension if significant progress was being made by then. "I just need to look at that and frankly turn to the professionals at the State Department to give me guidance.", Pompeo said.

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In declining to discuss his conversations with the president, Pompeo clarified that he wasn't asserting executive privilege.

"I'm not going to talk about conversations the president and I had", Pompeo replied, adding that Trump should be able to have private conversations with his top aides.

However, when asked if he would resign if Trump moved to scuttle the probe by firing special counsel Robert Mueller or the deputy attorney general to whom he reports, he said no. "My instincts tell me my obligation to continue to serve as America's senior diplomat will be more important in times of domestic political turmoil".



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