Watch Cory Booker Fiercely Grill Pompeo Over Shocking History of Bigotry
Booker didn’t let Pompeo get away with anything
John O. Brennan was a distinguished director of the CIA during the second term of the Obama Administration, so it is no surprise that Trump would nominate a completely unqualified successor, in Mike Pompeo, to take Brennan’s place. Outside of a short career in the army, Pompeo had no experience that would qualify him to lead the nation’s largest intelligence service, with his bigoted views only adding worry to the mix.
Now that President Trump wants him to be the nation’s Secretary of State following Rex Tillerson’s departure, the Democrats in the Senate had an opportunity to publicly out his bigotry. Stepping up to the plate was Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey, who actively grilled Pompeo during his confirmation hearing Thursday, April 12, 2018.
Booker began by questioning Pompeo about past comments he had made about Muslims, asking him if he truly believed that Muslims who didn’t openly condemn Islamic terrorism were “complicit” in their crimes: a fallacy known as guilt by association. Using typical Republican tactics, Pompeo tried to avoid the question by saying he actually meant that Muslims in leadership positions had an “opportunity” to speak out. Which hardly reflects his more draconian statements in the past.
Booker continued to hammer Pompeo about his previous associations with Islamophobic figures before moving onto the topic of homophobia: an area that conservatives continue to be regressive on, in spite of the Supreme Court ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges. From his time as a politician in Kansas to his reign as director of the CIA, Pompeo has been strongly associated with the anti-LGBT hate group the Family Research Council, which, among other disturbing policies, supported Ugandan legislation that made homosexuality punishable by death.
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Staying true to course, Booker directly asked Pompeo whether he thought being gay was “a perversion”. Surprisingly, the CIA director openly admitted that he did not believe that same-sex people should get married, but insisted that he treated everyone with respect regardless of their sexual orientation: a statement he reiterated when Booker bravely inquired if he believed that gay sex was also a perversion.
Booker ended his talk by telling Pompeo that his past words did matter since, as Secretary of State, he would be representing the United States around the world, including in countries where bigotry against minority groups is still an even bigger problem than it is here in America.
Watch Booker Grill Pompeo:
Image a screen capture from Senator Cory Booker’s YouTube channel
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