Report: Mike Pompeo Planning To Resign Because Trump ‘Hurting His Reputation’
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reportedly is looking to exit the Trump administration to run for a seat in the U.S. Senate, according to The Independent.
Three prominent Republicans familiar with Pompeo’s thinking said he initially planned to leave his post in the early spring, but the secretary of state is now concerned that his proximity to President Donald Trump is damaging his reputation.
A State Department official claimed that Pompeo is not looking to resign, however, saying that reports to the contrary are “completely false” and Pompeo is “100 per cent focused on being President Trump’s secretary of state.”
Pressure on Pompeo has ramped up as the House’s impeachment inquiry moves forward, with the State Department head facing criticism over his failure to defend his officials against public attacks from Trump — particularly former Ukraine ambassador Marie Yovanovitch.
Yovanovitch testified in the impeachment inquiry regarding a sustained — and ultimately successful — campaign by Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, the president, and others to remove her from her post.
“I’ll defer to the White House about particular statements and the like,” Pompeo said when asked about Trump attacking Yovanovitch on Twitter as she testified last week.
Pompeo’s situation worsened on Monday after closed-door testimony from senior State Department official David Hale was made public. Hale “told investigators that Mr Pompeo was aware of an alleged smear campaign against Ms Yovanovitch and he apparently called Sean Hannity, a prominent Fox News host, to demand evidence for the accusations against her.”
No such evidence was found, but the State Department issued no statement of support for Yovanovitch.