RELEASE: Secretary Tillerson Will Be Remembered for Lack of Diplomatic Achievements, Low Morale at State Department, CAP’s Kelly Magsamen Says

Washington, D.C. — Today, President Donald Trump announced the removal of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and plans to replace him with CIA Director Mike Pompeo. In response, Kelly Magsamen, vice president for National Security and International Policy at the Center for American Progress, issued the following statement:

President Trump’s disdain for the State Department and diplomacy has been clear since day one. Rex Tillerson’s tenure as secretary of state will not be remembered for diplomatic achievements, but instead for a massive exodus of U.S. career diplomats and extremely low morale. However, the impulsive manner of his firing should give everyone pause, especially at a time when the United States is about to enter high-stakes diplomacy with North Korea, when the Iran nuclear deal is in peril, and when our country and our allies are dealing with an increasing threat from Russia. It also is not clear that Mike Pompeo is any better suited for the position of secretary of state. Congress should hold him accountable to his extreme views on Iran and North Korea as well as his record of politicizing intelligence. Congress also should insist that he make a commitment to bolster and not undermine the State Department, which desperately needs good leadership.

For more information or to talk to an expert, please contact Sam Hananel at shananel@americanprogress.org, or 202-478-6327.