March 29, 2018
Next to HHS, probably no government agency is as important as the State Department. Maybe that's why the Left is suddenly so preoccupied with what President Trump is doing there.
Believe it or not, there are still people in America who agree with Barack Obama's miserable excuse for foreign policy. More than 200 of them, former U.S. ambassadors and diplomats, want to return to those days, firing off a curt letter to the ranking members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee about the country's "urgent need to restore the power and influence of American diplomacy." Organized by a nonprofit called Foreign Policy for America, the group insists that when Mike Pompeo's confirmation hearings start, the senators take no prisoners.
"This letter is a product of profound concern about the broad attitude of dismissiveness to diplomacy, the marginalization of professional diplomats, and the corrosion of the institution," said William Burns, a signatory who served under five administrations. Where was this "profound concern" under the last administration? President Obama spent eight years tanking America's reputation with international apology tours, treaties that encouraged our enemies' nuclear programs, speeches and decisions that undermined Israel, and policies that turned the State Department into an international bully on abortion and radical sexuality.
President Trump has spent the last 14 months as a glorified janitor, trying to clean up the messes made by Obama's brand of "diplomacy." He's had to fight Democrats for the confirmation of the empty leadership offices this letter complains about and handle new threats from every corner of the globe. Despite all that, he's gotten farther with countries like North Korea than any president yet. He's rebuilt the relationship with our strongest Middle East ally, and he's taking a no-nonsense approach to Iran. And in the midst of everything else, he's made sure Ambassador Sam Brownback is in place to confront the religious freedom violations all around the world.
His nominee to take the helm of the State Department and restore America's reputation, CIA Director Pompeo, is a respected and experienced conservative. Pompeo, he thinks (and we agree), can be the agent of change that predecessor Rex Tillerson was not. His job isn't to take our nation backward to the failed strategies of the past, but forward to new opportunities. If these 200 officials are truly concerned about America's reputation, then trust us. Pompeo is the man they've been waiting for.
Tony Perkins' Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.