Today, the Senate is holding confirmation hearings for Mike Pompeo, President Trump’s former CIA director who has now been nominated to replace Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. This gives our nation a much-needed closer look at the man who is going to be in charge of our nation’s diplomatic corps – and the hearing made it obvious that Pompeo has some serious red flags.
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The problematic nature of Pompeo’s unrepentant intolerance towards Muslims and gays became very clear right off the bat, as Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) challenged him on his bigotry – and Pompeo’s answers left much to be desired.
When asked if he believed being gay was a perversion, Pompeo waffled and ultimately refused to answer.
At his confirmation hearing, secretary of state nominee Mike Pompeo refuses to answer if he thinks that being gay is a perversion. pic.twitter.com/Rf9StH9rIV
— BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) April 12, 2018
Later on, when pressed on his longtime association with professional Islamophobes like Frank Gaffney, Pompeo again refuses to condemn his old racism buddies and simply remains hems and haws.
Cory Booker grills Pompeo about his appearances on show of Frank Gaffney, an Islamophobe has said Muslims should be tried for acts of sedition.
BOOKER: Did you remain silent in your position of authority against Gaffney's words?
POMPEO, SHORTER: Yes pic.twitter.com/jBHBOat1cQ
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 12, 2018
How Pompeo was able to breeze through his confirmation hearings the first time is still a mystery. Perhaps it was the flurry of having to run through so many hearings during the transition period – or perhaps it was the implicit acceptance that Islamophobia is tolerated, if not desired, for those working in our intelligence services.
I voted YES on Pompeo for CIA on the theory that he would be the “adult in the room.” I was wrong. I am voting NO on Pompeo for Secretary of State because our top diplomat should believe in diplomacy. He has an alarming tendency towards military provocation and brinkmanship.
— Brian Schatz (@brianschatz) April 11, 2018
Democrat Brian Schatz came out against Pompeo’s nomination today, but one wonders how Pompeo could have been considered an “adult in the room,” since he once implied that President Obama had a secret Muslim agenda and has been given awards by anti-Muslim hate groups.
It just goes to show how tolerable Islamophobia is in the United States government – and how much more accountability we need to hold for our elected officials.
Mike Pompeo is an Islamophobe, a homophobe, and an unrepentant warhawk who has no business leading our State Department. Call your Senators and tell them to vote NO on Pompeo’s confirmation.