By Burgess Everett (Politico) –
President Donald Trump is convinced Rand Paul won’t let him down. But the Kentucky Republican is showing no signs of backing off his fight to stop Mike Pompeo from becoming secretary of state.
After a telephone call with Trump on Wednesday and a hastily scheduled meeting with Pompeo on Thursday, Paul still hasn’t changed his stance against Pompeo. If the senator goes all out and gets Democrats on the Foreign Relations Committee to join him, it could kill Pompeo’s nomination right then and there.
Republicans are hopeful Paul wouldn’t stick it to Trump like that. And the panel’s Democrats haven’t said they’re ready to join hands with Paul just yet. But Pompeo’s backers are furious at the libertarian-minded Kentuckian for empowering liberal Democrats and opposing the president who beat Paul in the 2016 GOP primary over a critical staff appointment.