As Other Senate Dems Rally to Support Pompeo, McCaskill Waits As Other Senate Dems Rally to Support Pompeo, McCaskill Waits – NTK Network

As Other Senate Dems Rally to Support Pompeo, McCaskill Waits

The Missouri senator has not committed to either voting up or voting down CIA Director Mike Pompeo to be secretary of state. What is she waiting for?

By NTK Staff | 04.25.2018 @9:00am
As Other Senate Dems Rally to Support Pompeo, McCaskill Waits

The day after vulnerable colleagues Sens. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Joe Donnelly (D-IN) announced their support of CIA Director Mike Pompeo to be the new secretary of state, Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) is still holding out.

The Missouri senator told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch about what she’s “weighing” when it comes to the Pompeo nomination, which may come to the U.S. Senate floor this week.

McCaskill, D-Mo., told the Post-Dispatch Tuesday that she is weighing Pompeo’s testimony in confirmation hearings versus what he has said outside of that context that she says has often leansed toward use of force. McCaskill voted for Pompeo’s confirmation as director of the CIA last year, but said that the two jobs are different and require different leadership traits.

What McCaskill may really be waiting on? A political calculation: how a vote for Pompeo would upset her liberal base, versus how a vote against Pompeo would turn off Trump voters in a state the president won by 18.5 points in 2016.

The vote is fraught with difficulties for the nation’s most vulnerable Democratic senator. If McCaskill votes for the hawkish Pompeo, the vote may harm her efforts to bring liberal politicians like ex-President Obama to Missouri to campaign for her in the fall. If she votes against Pompeo she could be seen as a flip-flopper, given McCaskill supported Pompeo to lead the CIA.

Still, other Democratic senators up for reelection, like Manchin and Donnelly, and Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), also faced tough calculations like these, and still opted to support Pompeo. What’s McCaskill waiting for?

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