I've never backed North Korean regime change: Pompeo

Donald Trump’s nominee for Secretary of State Mike Pompeo

While in Congress, Pompeo voted against the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell", opposed expanding the Violence Against Women Act to include LGBT victims, and co-sponsored legislation permiting anti-LGBT discrimination under the guise of religious liberty.

Booker then pressed Pompeo for a yes or no answer on whether he considers gay sex a perversion, and after some back-and-forth, Pompeo said, "I'm going to give you the same answer I just gave you previously". "Is being gay a perversion?" "My respect for every individual, regardless of sexual orientation, is the same".

Trump fired former secretary of state Rex Tillerson last month and named Pompeo as his replacement. At the time, Pompeo was a Republican congressman from Wichita, Kansas.

Pompeo told the senators Thursday that "no one is under any illusions" that the summit will achieve a comprehensive agreement on the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

"Someone [Gabriel] who runs an organization that has been considered a hate group by the Anti-Defamation League and the Southern Poverty Law Center".

CIA Director Mike Pompeo faced questions from Colorado Sen.

"We need to push back in each place we confront them", Pompeo said, including the economic and cyber arenas. "I called him out".

CIA Director Mike Pompeo is now enduring his Senate confirmation hearing in a quest to become secretary of state.

More news: Saudi Aramco to build giant oil complex with French Total

Sen. Richard M. Burr, R-N.C., chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, assured his peers that Pompeo is transparent and a "natural fit" for the job. Jeanne Shaheen that he has "honored and valued every Central Intelligence Agency officer, regardless" of their sexual orientation, race, religion, etc.

Under questioning, he said he would be unlikely to resign as secretary of state if Trump were to fire Mueller.

Leaving no stone unturned, Menendez also grilled Pompeo on conversations he's had with the president regarding special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election. Trump in the coming days is also expected to potentially authorize a military strike against Syria after President Bashar al-Assad's regime used chemical weapons to attack a one-time rebel stronghold outside of the country's capital of Damascus.

"Meetings are being set up right now between myself and Kim Jong-un. A couple hundred Russians were killed", Pompeo said during his confirmation hearing in Washington.

Gardner also outlined the importance of a US presence in Asia, then asked Pompeo how he viewed the United States role in the region given the rise of Chinese economic and political influence. Trump said: "He will be a great Secretary of State!"

Senators will likely seek to know whether the White House is shifting strategies with Mr Trump's nomination of Mr Pompeo and the appointment of Mr John Bolton as national security adviser, both of whom share more hawkish views than their predecessors.

The Trump administration also faces crucial decisions on how to react to the use of chemical weapons in Syria, more sanctions on Russian Federation, and a deadline to confirm the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

"He has shown himself to be anti-equality and anti-Muslim, and quick to limit access to reproductive health care and deny the pressing issue of climate change", notes Van Hollen in his statement. "And for that reason, I plan to avidly support your nomination and confirmation". It's unclear at this time if Pompeo even has the votes to clear the 21-member panel since Paul, as a member of the committee, is a "no".

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