Manchin, Donnelly back Pompeo

Manchin, Donnelly back Pompeo
© Greg Nash

Two Senate Democrats came out in support on Monday of confirming CIA Director Mike PompeoMike PompeoSunday shows preview: Coronavirus dominates as country struggles with delta variant Christie, Pompeo named co-chairs of GOP redistricting group America needs a new strategy for Pacific Island Countries MORE as the next secretary of State, giving him a jolt of momentum ahead of vote later this afternoon on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Sens. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinBriahna Joy Gray: Push toward major social spending amid pandemic was 'short-lived' Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by Climate Power — Emissions heading toward pre-pandemic levels Biden discusses agenda with Schumer, Pelosi ahead of pivotal week MORE (D-W.Va.) and Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyRepublicans may regret restricting reproductive rights Sanders traveling to Iowa, Indiana to pitch Biden's spending package Supreme Court battle could wreak havoc with Biden's 2020 agenda MORE (D-Ind.) said they would vote for Pompeo, becoming the second and third Democrats to announce their support. Sen. Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampProgressives prepare to launch counterattack in tax fight Business groups aim to divide Democrats on .5T spending bill On The Money: Powell signals Fed will soon cut stimulus MORE (D-N.D.) announced her support on Friday.

They would give Pompeo more than enough votes to win approval on the Senate floor, even if he gets another GOP "no" vote. 

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Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulSenate lawmakers let frustration show with Blinken Rand Paul: 'Hatred for Trump' blocking research into ivermectin as COVID-19 treatment Masks and vaccines: What price freedom? MORE (R-Ky.) is the only Republican expected to vote against him, though Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCain20 years after 9/11, US foreign policy still struggles for balance What the chaos in Afghanistan can remind us about the importance of protecting democracy at home 'The View' plans series of conservative women as temporary McCain replacements MORE (R-Ariz.), who is battling brain cancer, is almost certain to miss the vote. Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeBiden nominates former Sen. Tom Udall as New Zealand ambassador Biden to nominate Jane Hartley as UK ambassador: report The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Goldman Sachs - Voting rights will be on '22, '24 ballots MORE (R-Ariz.) is also undecided on Pompeo.

If the Senate's other 48 Republicans vote "yes," that would give Pompeo 51 votes with the three Democrats. 

Sen. Angus KingAngus KingSenate backers of new voting rights bill push for swift passage Stacey Abrams backs Senate Democrats' voting rights compromise NY Democrat tests positive for COVID-19 in latest House breakthrough case MORE (I-Maine) and three Democratic senators who backed Pompeo's confirmation as CIA director remain on the fence over his confirmation as secretary of State: Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillRepublicans may regret restricting reproductive rights Sunday shows preview: States deal with fallout of Ida; Texas abortion law takes effect Giuliani to stump for Greitens in Missouri MORE (D-Mo.), Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerBiden discusses agenda with Schumer, Pelosi ahead of pivotal week CEOs urge Congress to raise debt limit or risk 'avoidable crisis' If .5 trillion 'infrastructure' bill fails, it's bye-bye for an increasingly unpopular Biden MORE (D-N.Y.) and Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerAdvocates call on top Democrats for 0B in housing investments Democrats draw red lines in spending fight Manchin puts foot down on key climate provision in spending bill MORE (D-Va.).

A fourth Democratic senator who supported Pompeo for CIA director, Maggie HassanMargaret (Maggie) HassanOvernight Hillicon Valley — Majority supports national data privacy standards, poll finds Senator calls on agencies to take action to prevent criminal cryptocurrency use Trump praises NH Senate candidate as Sununu weighs own bid MORE (N.H.), came out in opposition to Pompeo's nomination following the endorsements from Manchin and Donnelly.

Manchin, who like Donnelly and Heitkamp faces a challenging reelection race this fall in a state won by Trump in 2016 by double digits, noted Pompeo's "exemplary" career in offering his support. 

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"After meeting with Mike Pompeo, discussing his foreign policy perspectives, & considering his distinguished time as CIA Director & his exemplary career in public service, I will vote to confirm Mike Pompeo to be our next Secretary of State," Manchin said in a tweet.

Later on Monday, Donnelly also announced his support.

"We need a Secretary of State who will give the president an honest assessment on critical issues, including Russia, Syria, and the defeat of [the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria] ISIS. I believe Director Pompeo is capable of advancing U.S. interests and leading the State Department," Donnelly said in a statement.

Before Pompeo's nomination gets to the floor, he faces a possible historic defeat at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Pompeo is expected to fail to receive a favorable recommendation from the panel during a vote scheduled for early Monday evening, where Republicans hold a one-seat majority on the committee. Paul is a member of the committee and no Democrats on the panel are supporting Pompeo.

Sen. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerCheney set to be face of anti-Trump GOP How leaving Afghanistan cancels our post-9/11 use of force The unflappable Liz Cheney: Why Trump Republicans have struggled to crush her  MORE (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, could either send his nomination to the floor with an unfavorable recommendation or no recommendation.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnell'Justice for J6' rally puts GOP in awkward spot Republicans keep distance from 'Justice for J6' rally House to act on debt ceiling next week MORE (R-Ky.) could also try to discharge the nomination from committee, but that gives Democrats the leverage to potentially filibuster Pompeo because the move would require 60 votes.

This story was updated at 2:23 p.m.