Senate Dem hoping Pompeo now has 'greater appreciation' for balancing national security, civil rights

 Senate Dem hoping Pompeo now has 'greater appreciation' for balancing national security, civil rights
© Keren Carrion

Sen. Ben CardinBenjamin (Ben) Louis CardinSenate Democrats queasy over Sanders as nominee Schumer: Trump address 'demagogic, undignified, highly partisan' Democrats press IRS on protecting taxpayers from debt collectors MORE (D-Md.) said on Tuesday that he hoped former Rep. Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoDonald Trump: Unrepentant, on the attack and still playing the victim US defense chief says Taliban deal 'looks very promising' but not without risk Kobach says he discussed his Senate bid with Trump MORE's (R-Kan.) tenure as CIA director has given him "a greater appreciation for the balance between national security and civil rights."

Cardin's comments came hours after President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump administration eyes proposal to block jet engine sales to China: report Trump takes track to open Daytona 500 Brazile 'extremely dismayed' by Bloomberg record MORE announced that he would nominate Pompeo to replace Rex Tillerson as secretary of State. Cardin, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, voted against Pompeo's confirmation as CIA chief last year after Trump tapped Pompeo for the job.

"I am hopeful that after his time at the CIA, Director Pompeo has a greater appreciation for the balance between national security and civil rights, as well as the important role of our national security public servants," Cardin said. "I look forward to a robust hearing in the near future."

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In nominating Pompeo to replace Tillerson at the State Department, Trump is angling to install a top diplomat more closely aligned with him on issues including the Iran nuclear deal. 

Pompeo has supported keeping the prison at Guantánamo Bay open and has echoed Trump's rhetoric on "radical Islamic terrorism."

Speaking to reporters at the White House on Tuesday shortly after Tillerson's ouster, Trump praised Pompeo, saying that the two are "always on the same wavelength" and that he was "getting very close to having the Cabinet" he wants.

"I think Mike Pompeo will be a truly great secretary of State. I have total confidence in him," Trump said. "As far as Rex TillersonRex Wayne TillersonTrump lashes out over Kelly criticism: 'He misses the action' Timeline: Trump and Romney's rocky relationship Top Democrat demands Barr recuse himself from case against Turkish bank MORE is concerned, I very much appreciate his commitment and his service and I wish him well. He's a good man."