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- Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is "among the most sycophantic and obsequious people around Trump," an unnamed former US official told The New Yorker.
- "He’s like a heat-seeking missile for Trump’s ass," a former US ambassador, who was not named, said of Pompeo.
- An in-depth New Yorker profile depicts Pompeo as an official who has long courted President Donald Trump’s trust and approval, and sees his mission as executing the president’s directives without question.
- Pompeo was appointed secretary of state in 2018, after Trump fired his predecessor, Rex Tillerson.
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Former US officials have painted a portrait of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo as a sycophant towards President Donald Trump, whose key priority is to maintain Trump’s trust and confidence in him, according to a New Yorker profile published Monday.
One unnamed former US official described Pompeo, a former US Congressman from Kansas whose political rise has been meteoric, as "among the most sycophantic and obsequious people around Trump."
An unnamed former US ambassador gave an even blunter assessment of Pompeo, saying: "He’s like a heat-seeking missile for Trump’s ass."
The State Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider on the report.
Pompeo was appointed secretary of state by Trump in April 2018 after the president fell out with Rex Tillerson, his predecessor in the role. Tillerson, the former CEO of Exxon Mobil, frequently clashed with Trump, and was eventually fired.
Since his appointment, Pompeo has become one of Trump’s most loyal servants, despite having warned prior to his election that Trump would be an authoritarian president, the Washington Post reported last year.
According to the profile, Pompeo believes that his job is "serving the President, whatever the President asks of him," the New Yorker said.
This is in contrast to former senior officials such as Tillerson and former Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, who would confront Trump when they disagreed with his directives, it added.
Despite his determination to portray himself as a Trump ultra-loyalist, according to the report, Pompeo has expressed misgivings about the president’s unpredictable and impulsive orders behind closed doors.
One of the unnamed former senior official told the publication he had heard identical complaints from Pompeo and former national security adviser HR McMaster.
"We put together carefully crafted policies on things and the President blows it up with a tweet, and I have to go in and put Humpty Dumpty back together," the official paraphrased McMaster and Pompeo as saying.
- Trump is convinced there is a conspiracy to distort economic data and exaggerate the prospect of a recession
- Trump is anxious a recession could tank his reelection chances, but officials aren’t openly bracing for one because they’re worried about fueling the fire
- Trump is reportedly ignoring pleas from aides to back Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protesters, as he fights to make trade war progress with China