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Frank Gaffney: A man I’ve come to regard with the greatest admiration as well as personal affection for his leadership in the war for the free world, both in the kinetic phases of it, frankly, as well as the phases that are now taking place in Capitol Hill. He is Congressmen Mike Pompeo, he is a member of the House Intelligence Committee, a member of the House Select Committee on Benghazi, also the Committee on Energy and Commerce, but in a previous life he was first in the class graduate of West Point. A man who went on to be a member of the United States Army, an Officer up there for some six years including a combat tour. He was also a member of the Harvard Law School graduating program. A man of many parts in short, and always a welcomed guest here. Congressman Mike Pompeo welcome back, good to have you with us sir.
Rep. Mike Pompeo: Frank, it’s great to be with you. I actually I didn’t have a combat tour but there were days that felt like it for sure.
FG: I’m sure I’m sure; let me talk to you about combat at the moment sir leadership fight in the House of Representatives. Any insights on how that’s likely to sort?
MP: Well yes sir, we as a caucus are looking for a conservative leader to take the House forward. Today, I think where it sits there’s been about half dozen folks that have expressed some interest, including me, and we’re trying to find the right place, we’re trying to figure it out. If Congressman Paul Ryan is full throated and wants to do it, I believe he is a man with deep conservative instincts. I know there others who have attacked him. I’ve gotten to know Paul; he started out in the Kansas delegation as a staff person. I know Paul by heart and his heart is for freedom and liberty and has worked on crushing the entitlements without crushing the people of Kansas and all across America has been noble and unequalled, so I’m hopeful that he will move forward and we can rally to him. I mean we, America, can rally to him. I think that’d be a great turn for our country.
FG: We’ll be watching it closely as well of course you, and I very intrigued to hear that you might be a candidate yourself. Going to be doubly interested in the outcome as a result. Congressman, a couple of other things that I’d like to touch on just quickly with you. There is a rising level of violence against Israel at the moment. Some of it has been described as kind of a third intifada, but there certainly seems to be a growing appetite on the part of Israel’s other enemies to go at it with her. Do you think it’s likely that at least part of why this is happening is a sense that the United States is no longer standing behind Israel as it has in the past, at the UN and elsewhere for that matter, under President Obama?
MP: Frank I think it is almost certain that that’s the case. Whether you are a member of Hamas in the Gaza Strip or Palestinian in the West Bank, you watch a President of the United States who has consistently sided with the side that was opposing Israel for his entire time in office, and you realize that you have but a year and a half left to make as much progress as you can, and know that when you do that how you’ll be met with relatively little resistance, so I think it is Look at the case that you now have Russian aircraft flying within about two minutes of the Israeli borders, and that is a fundamental strategic shift, and I think everyone watches that. I know the Israelis are watching it closely, but I think those that want to destroy Israel are watching it equally closely and know that they have a window of opportunity.
FG: Yeah that’s a chilling thought and I’m afraid you’re absolutely right. Congressman, tonight Hillary Clinton will be presumably inveighing against the Select Committee on which you serve concerning Benghazi, deriding it, frankly unfortunately, partly by reference to your Majority Leader, Kevin McCarthy, that this is just all political witch-hunt. You’ve been serving on that Committee for sometime, you’ve take an exception to this kind of characterization. Give us the flavor of what your response to Hillary would be?
MP: Frank I always, when I’m involved in something, just speak about the facts as I know them. I’ve watched this Committee operate in the House since May of 2014. I’ve watched us attempt to get a hold of documents, I’ve watched Secretary Clinton and the State Department behave in the most obstructionist way. I’ve watched our Democrat colleagues on the Committee do the same; they haven’t lifted one figure to get a single fact about the death of four Americans on their watch too. And I’ve watched this Committee behave in a way that is incredibly professional and aimed at getting answers. We’ve been back to dozens and dozens of depositions and interviews, we’ve looked to tens of thousands of documents. Secretary Clinton has been a very small part of that, but she was the senior U.S. diplomat when one of her ambassadors was killed. It would be investigatory malpractice if we didn’t conduct a hearing with her and we’ll do it a week from now.
FG: Yeah you’ll be talking with her on that occasion, the hearing with Hillary Clinton much anticipated long awaited, among other things about her conduct of email insecurity I guess is one way of putting it, with respect to among other things to the Benghazi matter. There have been claims that this is all much to do about nothing. Your quick assessment of her culpability for misconduct in that regard?
MP: I think it’s pretty apparent when the Secretary of State is telling nearly every employee in the State Department we have to have you conducting official business on official government equipment and communications lines, but she creates an exception for herself. I think that tells you the answer about the risk that was created when someone doesn’t follow the procedures that put in place not only for the good of the Secretary of State but for the safety of all the people that work for and around her.
FG: Does it trouble you Congressman Mike Pompeo of Kansas, that the President of the United States, in the midst of investigation by his Justice Department and the FBI, has said that he doesn’t think there was any problem in terms of national security?
MP: That was both weird and unsurprising if you can hold those two thoughts at the same time Frank. No, I mean there’s a significant investigation being undertaken by Director Comey of the FBI and that he do the work and get to a conclusion and share that conclusion with American people whatever it might be. Very odd to see the President of the United States predetermine the outcome of that investigation.
FG: Well one hopes it doesn’t contaminate the pursuit of the facts either by the Executive Branch or by yourself and the other in the Congress. Two other quick issues if we can Congressman, and we’re going to do a lightening round here. You have come up on the net rather vigorously as has one of your Senate colleagues, Senator Pat Roberts, and the Governor of your State of Kansas, Governor Sam Brownback, against the idea of President Obama depositing at Fort Leavenworth detainees from Guantanamo Bay. Why is that a problem?
MP: Well Frank I don’t want them anywhere but the place that they are for starters. They need to be held in the exact place.
FG: As you say, not in anybody’s back yard not just yours.
MP: Yeah right not in anybody’s backyard, they need to be held there because it’s an enormously important intelligence collection asset for us, to have the ability to bring unlawful enemy combatants to a location where we can conduct interrogations to take down al-Qaeda and ISIS and all the network of jihadists around them, so I don’t want them anywhere putting them in the state, whether it’s Fort Leavenworth or anyplace else presents enormous risk to our nation and a feeding frenzy for liberal plaintiff lawyers who will do everything they can to make sure those folks never come to trial.
FG: Yeah and perhaps jihadist as well. Lastly, and we only have a minute or so left Congressman Mike Pompeo, you have been at the forefront of the effort to defeat what I call the ObamaBomb deal. Does the recent test of a long-range missile with apparently maneuvering warhead capabilities, clearly a nuclear delivery system, by the Iranians in the midst of all this business of providing them among other things $150 billion dollars in windfall funds, cause us a new basis for opposing this agreement?
MP: It most certainly does, it is precisely what one might expect from a deal of this nature. It’s amazing the Obama administration has already conceded it violates the UN resolution. It has not yet conceded that it violates the agreement itself. My sense is that it does, I need to see the technical activity that took place. I have not seen that formally, but put the legal aside for just a moment. It is certainly is telling about the Iranians intent to continue to develop a nuclear arsenal and I suspect we will see more of that. The President said sanctions will snap back, I think it’s time.
FG: Yeah well, I’m not holding my breath and I know you’re not either, but I’m hoping that you will redouble your efforts Congressman with everything else on your plate to scupper this deal, you’ve done a very heroic job so far and we need to get it put over the top finally. Congressman Mike Pompeo again, thank you very much for your visits with us periodically. We appreciate them enormously as do your leadership in the United States Congress on the Energy Committee, in the Intelligence Committee, and of course not least in the Select Committee on Benghazi. We look forward to talking with you perhaps after Hillary Clinton’s appearance next week. Keep up the good work my friend come back to us soon.