Pompeo working to rebuild ties with US diplomats: report

Pompeo working to rebuild ties with US diplomats: report
© Anna Moneymaker

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has sought to restore ties with top American diplomats by promoting them at increasing rates, according to Reuters.

Reuters reported Monday that Pompeo has significantly increased the number of diplomats promoted to three of the top four ranks as he seeks to improve the attitudes of diplomats who were discouraged by former Secretary of State Rex TillersonRex Wayne TillersonWhite House ousts Sessions Trump downplays potential turnover: 'Everybody wants to work in this White House' Trump says Cabinet changes likely after midterms MORE.

Diplomats were reportedly demoralized by Tillerson's "distant management style," as well as his unwillingness to consult in-house experts and "inability to get personnel choices" through the Trump White House, Reuters reported.

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In addition to promoting diplomats at increasing rates, Pompeo has also resumed hiring diplomats' family members and sent "cheerleading emails" about his travels to staff members, according to Reuters.

Pompeo reportedly recommended increasing the U.S. foreign services' number of career ministers, the second-highest rank, from four to eight. He also proposed roughly doubling the number of "minister-counselors," the third-highest rank, from 35 to 68, according to Reuters.

Tillerson in November 2017 sought to defend himself against criticisms that he carried out too many budget cuts as secretary of State. He during a question-and-answer session following a speech at the time that there had been no "hollowing out" at the department.

"These numbers that people are throwing around are just false. They’re wrong,” he said. 

Tillerson added that he was offended by reports of staff cuts. 

“And when I read these articles that there’s this hollowing out, I take offense to that on their behalf because the people that are serving in those roles are doing extraordinary work and they know they’re not going to get the job permanently,” he said.