The Latest on the Republican National Convention (all times local):
Democrats are unloading on Secretary of State Mike Pompeo ahead of his planned address to the Republican National Convention from Jerusalem.
An aide to Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden who has worked for the State Department calls Pompeo’s Tuesday speech “flat out disgraceful.” Aide Bill Russo says it’s “an abuse of taxpayer money.”
Another top Biden deputy, Kate Bedingfield, blasts Pompeo as President Donald Trump’s “errand boy” and says he has a record of “repeated and blatant use of his office for overtly political purposes.”
Secretaries of state regularly travel abroad on behalf of a U.S. administration’s agenda, but Pompeo’s speech to a party convention from foreign soil is an outlier.
Russo mocks Pompeo’s explanation that he will address the GOP convention on personal time. Russo notes that the speech is still part of “official travel” and that taxpayer money “got him there” and is “paying for his protection” and for the “the staff on the ground” with him.
Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey is a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and says Pompeo’s move “violates his own policy.” Booker referred to Pompeo’s “memos and instructions” sent recently to his department’s employees.