WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, released the following statement Wednesday regarding his opposition to the nomination of Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo to serve as the next Secretary of State:
“Director Pompeo has a clear record of public service to his nation – in uniform, in Congress, and as the director of the CIA. I thank him for that service and for his willingness to continuing serving the United States.
“After personally meeting with him and reviewing his testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, I do not believe Mr. Pompeo will be an independent voice in advising the president, nor an advocate for leading our allies and friends around the world in support of the international norms and values that protect America and enhance our prosperity and security.
“At a time when we’ll soon be the only nation not party to the Paris Climate Agreement, and when we need a surge in diplomacy to resolve crises in Iran and North Korea, the United States needs a Secretary of State who can effectively build meaningful and respectful partnerships and bridges in pursuit of America’s national security interests. I do not believe Mr. Pompeo is that candidate.
“Mr. Pompeo has made repeated, damning statements about members of the Islamic faith and the LGBT community during his public career that are completely antithetical to American values. His statements in that regard make it challenging for him to represent our country to the world and oversee our smart power arsenal.
“Therefore, I will not support Mr. Pompeo’s nomination to serve as Secretary of State.”