In the vote, 56 senators backed Tillerson, and 43 voted no. Senate Democrats had tried, but failed, to delay the vote because of Trump’s executive order banning immigration from seven mostly Muslim countries and temporarily halting the entry of refugees. They said they wanted to ask Tillerson more questions about the issue after Trump signed the order.
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted 11-10 to approve Tillerson, with every Republican backing the former oil executive and every Democrat opposing him. Democrats said they voted against Tillerson over fears he might lift sanctions on Russia.
Tillerson’s support for a more assertive policy toward Russia than Trump has espoused was tempered by his refusal to commit to support maintaining President Barack Obama’s executive order authorizing additional sanctions against Moscow because of its interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
Donald Trump’s nominee for secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, has no traditional experience in diplomacy after working for ExxonMobil for nearly three decades. There are also serious questions about the oil executive’s relations with Russia.
The central question facing Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson if he becomes U.S. secretary of state is whether a life-long oil man with close ties to Russia can pivot from advancing corporate interests to serving the national interest.
As Exxon’s CEO, Tillerson oversees operations in more than 50 countries, including Russia. In 2011, Exxon signed a deal with Rosneft, Russia’s largest state-owned oil company, for joint oil exploration and production. Since then, the companies have formed 10 joint ventures for projects in Russia.
“I had a wonderful evening with President-elect Trump,” Romney said in remarks to reporters. “We had another discussion about affairs throughout the world and these discussions I’ve had with him have been enlightening, and interesting, and engaging.”
Trump and Romney emerged from their meeting after an hour and 20 minutes. Trump told reporters their talks “went great,” and Romney said he and Trump “had a far-reaching conversation with regards to the various theaters in the world.”
“If we don’t stand with men and women suffering in anonymity, then what do we stand for? If we don’t give voice to the voiceless, then why bother to speak?”–Secretary of State John Kerry, speaking to foreign ministers at the U.N. General Assembly about the crimes against humanity in North Korean prison camps.
By Maeve Reston, Los Angeles Times Bill Clinton said he was “dumbfounded” by Karl Rove’s suggestion that his wife might have suffered from a traumatic brain injury, but shrugged off the incident and suggested that it was just the beginning of a GOP effort to raise questions about Hillary Rodham Clinton’s stamina. “I’ve got to give […]
By Joel Greenberg, McClatchy Foreign Staff JERUSALEM — U.S. officials on Wednesday clung to the idea of revived Middle East peace talks even after tit-for-tat provocations by the Palestinians and Israelis in recent days signaled that Secretary of State John Kerry’s signature diplomatic effort was in danger of collapse. Palestinian officials on Wednesday formally applied to […]
Feb. 3 (Bloomberg) — Two prominent Republican senators say that U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told them — along with 13 other members of a bipartisan congressional delegation — that President Barack Obama’s administration is in need of a new, more assertive, Syria policy; that al Qaeda-affiliated groups in Syria pose a direct terrorist […]
Oct. 14 (Bloomberg) — When does “no” not really mean no? When politicians say it. Reporters understand that if the circumstances are right, the answer can always change. On Thursday, NBC News’ Savannah Guthrie asked Secretary of State Hillary Clinton about the rumor du jour, that President Barack Obama might ask Clinton to swap jobs […]
In a profile of Senator John Kerry and his foreign policy vision–and actions, as Foreign Relations Committee Chairman and friend of many foreign leaders, Kerry is a de-facto member of Obama’s national security team–the New York Times magazine analyzes the likely successor to Hillary Clinton over at Foggy Bottom: Kerry’s willingness to go anywhere he […]