On Thursday, the Senate confirmed former CIA Director Mike Pompeo as the new U.S. Secretary of State. The vote was 57 ayes and 42 nays; he received one more vote than his predecessor, Rex Tillerson, who got 56 yes votes.
The New York Times reported, “Mr. Pompeo was expected to be sworn in almost immediately after the vote, after which he planned to dash to Joint Base Andrews, where a plane was waiting to fly him to Brussels on his first trip abroad as secretary of state for a meeting of NATO allies. His agenda is already packed, with crucial deadlines in the coming weeks involving Russia, North Korea, Syria and Venezuela.”
The protracted argument over whether to confirm Pompeo was brought to a close after Senator Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota said last week that she would support him. On Monday, Senators Joe Manchin III of West Virginia and Joe Donnelly of Indiana, echoed their support. All three senators come from states won by President Trump in 2016.
Pompeo, a noted hardliner, will have a close ally in newly-appointed National Security Advisor John Bolton.