Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Friday that he has not ruled out running for Republican presidential nominee in 2024 — even if his former boss, President Donald Trump, makes another White House bid that year.
What are the details?
During an interview with Fox Business' "WSJ at Large," host Gerard Baker asked Pompeo, "Are you seriously pondering a run in 2024 for the Republican nomination?"
"Just like every day, I'm going to go work for the set of policies that I've been working on all my life, including these last four years as CIA director and then secretary of state," Pompeo replied.
"I think America first makes an awful lot of sense," he continued. "We've got to do that here at home as well."
Pompeo went on to say, "What happens electorally in '22 matters an awful lot. I'm going to go work to help good conservative candidates be elected, and then we'll consider whether 2024 is an opportunity for me to go back to elected office or not. I love the fight, Gerry."
Baker then asked, "If President Trump runs again — and all indications are that he may — would you run against him?"
"That's a long way off," Pompeo responded, "I don't think any of us have figured out what we're doing 2024." But the former secretary of state left the possibility open, adding, "We'll make make those decisions another time."
Former Secretary of State @SecPompeo not ruling out a presidential run in 2024, even if it’s against… https://t.co/rWXNhvr8Yv— WSJ at Large (@WSJ at Large) 1618605940.0
Speculation about Pompeo running has ramped up in recent weeks after he traveled to Iowa and made a number of stops at GOP gatherings, in what CNN called "an unofficial but unsubtle step into the 2024 presidential race."
Pompeo declared on the March 26 trip, "We're in Iowa after all — the first-in-the-nation primary." Iowa is the first state to caucus, and the first primary is then held in New Hampshire.
Pompeo also hit the news Friday after the State Department's inspector general's office released the findings of its investigation into allegations that the former secretary of state and his wife, Susan Pompeo, instructed State Department staff to perform personal tasks for the couple on the taxpayer's dime.
Politico obtained the report, which found "over 100 requests to Department employees" by the Pompeos "that are inconsistent with the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch or raised questions about the proper use of Department resources."
Examples of tasks carried out by State Department employees for the Pompeos allegedly included addressing and mailing their Christmas cards, booking hair appointments for Mrs. Pompeo, planning non-government-affiliated events and setting up restaurant reservations for the family.
The outlet reported:
Mike Pompeo, in an interview with investigators, insisted that the requests were often small and the types of things friends do for friends. His lawyer, William Burck, slammed a draft version of the report he received as a politically biased "compilation of picayune complaints cherry-picked by the drafters."
The inspector general's office, however, defended the investigation, noting that many of the rules governing such interactions are clear, do not make exceptions for small tasks, and that the Pompeos' requests ultimately added up to use a significant amount of the time of employees paid by taxpayers.