Although President Donald Trump repeatedly railed against Secretary of State Hillary Clinton over the attacks on the Benghazi consulate, he still has yet to nominate anyone to oversee American embassy security.
As Politico reported, Congressional Democrats are calling the omission hypocritical while Republicans are encouraging Trump to work faster to fill this and other important posts at the State Department.
“The State Department has security professionals who are up to the job, but we do need all hands on deck given the many evolving threats we face,” said Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA). “I hope a nominee for assistant secretary will be put forward soon.”
Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY) called out the GOP for “a bunch of political cheap talk” on embassy security. Democrats say that the nominee hasn’t materialized because Trump has prioritized staff for the defense Department and he’s been slow to find staff in general.
“Unfortunately, I think it’s indicative of the low priority that Trump and the administration are placing on diplomacy or anything to do with the State Department,” Engel said.
Thus far, only two nominations have been proposed for the senior team at the State Department, not including ambassadors: Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and John Sullivan, Tillerson’s deputy.
Politico reported more than three dozen positions at the State Department remain unfilled and hundreds of positions still haven’t been confirmed by the Senate. The White House said that they’re relying on career professionals in the mean time, but it’s unclear if it is the same professionals fearful to engage in eye contact with Tillerson.
Clinton’s “decisions spread death, destruction and terrorism everywhere she touched,” Trump said during the 2016 campaign. “Among the victims is our late Ambassador, Chris Stevens. He was left helpless to die as Hillary Clinton soundly slept in her bed — that’s right, when the phone rang at 3 o’clock in the morning, she was sleeping.”