The Trump administration is currently without an appointed and confirmed Secretary of State and director of the Central Intelligence Agency. But that is likely to be resolved in the coming weeks.
On Thursday, the Senate will hold a hearing on whether or not to confirm Mike Pompeo as the next Secretary of State. There certainly will be no shortage of partisan outrage and grandstanding, but Pompeo only needs a simple majority to take the helm at Foggy Bottom and has already been confirmed by this Senate last year when he was tapped to be Director of the CIA. Having dozens of prominent conservatives endorsing the CIA Director definitely won’t hurt his chances.
The other confirmation hearing for Gina Haspel has not been put on the calendar at this time but today she received her own list of endorsements from a who’s who of American foreign policy establishment. Names like George Tenant, John Brennen, and Henry Kissinger appear on the endorsement. As is the case with Pompeo, there will be no shortage of partisan theatrics.
More than 50 former government/intel/natsec officials send a letter of support for DCIA nominee Gina Haspel to Senate Intelligence Committee.
Haspel’s qualifications “match or exceed those of most candidates put forward in the Agency’s 70-year history,” they write (1/2) pic.twitter.com/TonQmCPqoj
— Olivia Victoria Gazis (@Olivia_Gazis) April 9, 2018
Rand Paul already had to retract a bogus claim made about Haspel, but still vows that he will filibuster both nominations. Something that is sure to generate campaign contributions but will ultimately do little in the way of slowing down Haspel’s confirmation.
These conformations need to happen in a timely manner. Tensions with Assad, Iran, and Moscow are at a high point and how to handle Turkey and Manbij are on hold until these confirmations happen. Manbij being on hold means American troops sit exposed looking like bait to the Iranian proxies and Russian mercenaries on the wrong side of the Euphrates.