The Washington Post reports: President-elect Donald Trump has picked as his secretary of state Rex Tillerson, the chief executive of ExxonMobil, setting up a possible confrontation with members of his own party in the Senate, Trump’s transition team announced Tuesday.
Since Tillerson’s name emerged as a candidate for the post, leading Republicans have expressed reservations about his years of work in Russia and the Middle East on behalf of the multinational petroleum company.
GOP advisers have warned that a growing number of Republican senators may be unwilling to vote to confirm Tillerson because of his ties to Russia. While Senate Democrats cannot filibuster Trump’s Cabinet picks, Republicans have only 52 votes in the Senate, leaving them in potential jeopardy if Democrats unite in opposition to Tillerson. It will take at least 50 votes to confirm a nominee, plus Vice President-elect Mile Pence casting a tiebreaking vote. [Continue reading…]
The Daily Beast reports: Donald Trump’s long-time but informal adviser Roger Stone says the Secretary of State job was dangled in front of Mitt Romney in order to “torture” him for previously opposing the president-elect.
During a Sunday appearance on InfoWars with Alex Jones, a conspiratorial media outlet that has become a mouthpiece of the next president, Stone called Romney a “choker” and said that Trump was simply toying with him.
“Donald Trump was interviewing Mitt Romney for Secretary of State in order to torture him,” Stone claimed on the program. “To toy with him. And given the history, that’s completely understandable. Mitt Romney crossed a line. He didn’t just oppose Trump, which is his democratic right, he called him a phony and a fraud. And a con man. And that’s not the kind of man you want as Secretary of State.” [Continue reading…]