But if Flake declines to support Pompeo's nomination, it also means a second Democrat would have to back him to secure his confirmation on the Senate floor. Coons also opposed Pompeo's nomination to be director of the Central Intelligence Agency past year.
Paul has adamantly refused to support Trump's nominee due to his objections to some of Pompeo's foreign policy positions. The president recalled that Paul "voted for health care" when he was inclined to oppose it.
Democrats are navigating a political minefield as they weigh their support for Mike Pompeo's nomination as secretary of State. Rand Paul (Ky.) has stated he will oppose him. Sen. She is the first Senate Democrat to do so.
Another undecided, Democratic Sen. Angus King (Maine)-in an eventual 66-32 vote to make him CIA Director.
"The reality is even Democrats who've been inclined to support some of our nominations haven't [changed their minds about Pompeo], so I don't know that it moves the ball in either direction", Sen. He says Pompeo has done a good job in his current role, but that it is not a policy job. "He's already invested deeply in the upcoming summit between the president and [North Korean leader] Kim Jong Un". Pompeo could be the first secretary of state to not receive a positive vote out of the overseeing committee on foreign relations, which wouldn't kill his nomination but could be a black mark on his tenure as secretary out of the gate.
The committee includes 11 Republicans and 10 Democrats.
As Corker spoke on Wednesday, the top Democrat on Foreign Relations, Robert Menendez, was giving a speech in Washington announcing that he would not vote for Pompeo. But for senators to vote down a highly qualified nominee over their disdain for the president is completely unwarranted and, quite frankly, a breach of Senate norms.
In a sign of deep worry about secretary of state nominee Mike Pompeo's confirmation prospects, President Trump and other Republicans launched a concerted messaging blitz against Senate Democrats and GOP Sen. Joe Donnelly of Indiana, Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota and Claire McCaskill of Missouri - all of whom are up for re-election this year in states that Trump won by big margins in 2016. "He's never let me down".
Even if Pompeo receives an unfavorable recommendation, it's not game over for him.
"I'm not there. I just need some - I mean, what I'm looking for is consistent with USA policy and it's not a heavy lift, " Flake said, declining to offer details but noting that he and Pompeo spoke Wednesday night.
California Democrat Dianne Feinstein attributes her come-lately opposition to Mr. Pompeo's allegedly undiplomatic statements about "Muslims and the LGBT community".
Conway told reporters that Trump "is already viewing Director Pompeo as the nation's chief diplomat".
Pompeo doesn't appear to have the votes to win approval in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee - leading the White House to urge that the full Senate ignore the committee and vote on him anyway. And if he is confirmed, Pompeo will have one or more conservative Democrats to thank for it.