Graham jokes to Pompeo: You're the 'longest-serving member of the cabinet, right?'

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGraham throws support behind Trump's Turkey sanctions Hillicon Valley: Warren takes on Facebook over political ads | Zuckerberg defends meetings with conservatives | Civil liberties groups sound alarm over online extremism bill Fury over Trump Syria decision grows MORE (R-S.C.) on Tuesday joked with Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoTrump: Let Assad, Russia or China protect the Kurds Reporter presses Pompeo on whether he met with Giuliani in Warsaw Pompeo: 'I wish the NBA would acknowledge' China's treatment of Uyghur Muslims MORE, asking him if he was the longest-serving member of President TrumpDonald John TrumpBusiness school deans call for lifting country-specific visa caps Bolton told ex-Trump aide to call White House lawyers about Ukraine pressure campaign: report Federal prosecutors in New York examining Giuliani business dealings with Ukraine: report MORE's Cabinet after he mentioned he was about to reach his one-year anniversary in the administration. 

"I'm now nine days short of one year of my time as Secretary of State," Pompeo said while appearing before the Senate Appropriations Committee to testify about State, foreign operations and related programs. 


"The longest-serving member of the cabinet, right?" Graham quipped in response, prompting awkward laughter from people attending the hearing. 

Pompeo could be seen smiling after Graham made the comment before saying, "Reclaiming my time." 

Graham's comment comes amid a week in which multiple senior officials have exited the administration. Trump announced on Sunday that Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen NielsenKirstjen Michele NielsenTrump says acting Homeland Security chief McAleenan will step down Activists to demonstrate at ICE headquarters after Cameroonian immigrant dies in custody Ex-Citizenship and Immigration Services chief returns to DHS in different role MORE, who assumed her role in 2017, would be leaving her post. 

NBC News reported that a recent push from Trump to renew a family separation policy at the southern border led to Nielsen's ouster.

The White House said the following day that Trump was also removing U.S. Secret Service Director Randolph "Tex" Alles from his position. CNN reported that Trump fired Alles, though Alles has contested that report, saying that he learned "weeks ago" that there would be "transitions in leadership" across the Department of Homeland Security.

A number of high-profile administration officials, including former White House chief of staff John KellyJohn Francis KellyMORE, former Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsTrump attacks Sessions: A 'total disaster' and 'an embarrassment to the great state of Alabama' Ocasio-Cortez fires back at Washington Times after story on her 'high-dollar hairdo' Trump's tirades, taunts and threats are damaging our democracy MORE and former Environmental Protection Agency head Scott PruittEdward (Scott) Scott PruittSierra Club sues EPA over claim that climate change 'is 50 to 75 years out' EPA on 'forever chemicals': Let them drink polluted water EPA moving ahead with science transparency rule by 'early next year' MORE, have exited their posts in Trump's first two years in office.

Pompeo was confirmed as secretary of State in April 2018, about a month after Trump dismissed his first State Department chief, Rex TillersonRex Wayne TillersonThe Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by USAA — Ex-Ukraine ambassador testifies Trump pushed for her ouster Trump to tap No. 2 State Dept. official as Russia ambassador Giuliani pressed Trump, Tillerson for Turkish prisoner swap in Oval Office meeting: report MORE, from the role.