ITS OFFICIAL: Trump Confirms Surprise Pick for Secretary of State

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Rumors surrounding President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for Secretary of State have been swirling since his election. Those encouraged by Trump’s call to “drain the swamp” were hopeful that Trump’s pick would be an outsider. Today Trump announced ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson as his pick for Secretary, a move that further angers Trump’s critics on the left.

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This nomination is just the latest in Trump’s list of picks. He officially announced Monday the he intends to nominate retired Marine Gen. John Kelly for Secretary of the Homeland Security Department.

Trump has met with multiple candidates regarding the Secretary of State position. Last week, he spent time with Tillerson. The CEO’s lack of political experience was not disqualifying for Trump, who instead has chosen to focus on Tillerson’s broad international business success.


One of the key elements of Tillerson’s record that has infuriated those on the left is Tillerson’s ties to Russia. Tillerson spearheaded expansion into Russia for Exxon, and was a vocal critic of recent sanctions.

Trump praised Tillerson on “Fox News Sunday,” noting that the oilman was “much more than a business executive.”

“He’s in charge of an oil company that’s pretty much double the size of his next nearest competitor. “It’s been a company that’s been unbelievably managed-and to me a great advantage is he knows many of the players-and he knows them well, he does massive deals in Russia, he does massive deals-for the company, not for himself for the company.”


Trump’s repeated emphasis on renewing our relationship with Russia has become a point of concern for a republican politicians, too. Marco Rubio took to Twitter to voice his concern.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., chairman of the Armed Services Committee, has labeled Putin is a “thug.”


McCain told CBS News’ “Face the Nation,” that Tillerson would get a “fair hearing” in the senate. He acknowledged that Tillerson’s ties to Russia might be “strictly commercial,” but noted that “it should be a matter of concern.”

Trump isn’t phased by Tillerson’s Russian connections.  “The fact that he actually has a relationship with people like Vladimir Putin and others across the globe is something that [we] shouldn’t be … embarrassed by,” Trump noted.