Greg Nash

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said on Monday that CIA Director Mike Pompeo will be confirmed as secretary of State despite a growing number of Democrats coming out against his nomination.

“He will pass. … He understands the threats of the world better than anybody. He’s a former Army officer, member of Congress, very sharp guy. But he will be secretary of State,” Graham told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt.

{mosads}Pompeo has an uphill path to confirmation.

Republicans hold a narrow 51-seat majority. With GOP Sen. Rand Paul (Ky.) opposed and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) absent while he battles brain cancer, Pompeo will need the support of at least one Democratic senator to be confirmed.

Thirteen Democrats and independent Sen. Angus King (Maine) supported Pompeo to be CIA director. Sens. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) have said they will vote against his State Department nomination.

Graham predicted that red-state Democrats including Sens. Joe Manchin (W.Va.) and Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.) would still support Pompeo.

But with Paul opposed and Republicans holding one-seat advantage on the Foreign Relations Committee, Pompeo could fail to get a favorable vote by the committee.

“I’ve never been more disappointed in my Democratic colleagues on the Foreign Relations Committee,” Graham said.

Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) has said he hopes to have the panel’s vote on Pompeo next week. He’s also signaled that Pompeo’s nomination will be sent to the Senate floor even if he doesn’t win over a majority of the committee.

Tags Angus King Bob Corker Brian Schatz Heidi Heitkamp Joe Manchin John McCain Lindsey Graham Mike Pompeo Rand Paul secretary of State Tim Kaine trump nominees

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