Congress had to double its budget to cover Mike Pompeo's security detail: report
Former United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's personal security detail has cost American taxpayers millions of dollars in the two years since his incumbency ended at the conclusion of Donald Trump's presidency.
"Pompeo continues to receive 24-hour security following what the State Department says is a credible threat against him, costing taxpayers an unprecedented amount of money," according to a NewsNation report published on Wednesday. Its "investigation found that it isn’t necessarily the threat against Pompeo that’s costing taxpayers, however.
Pompeo, NewsNation explained, "also maintains a busy schedule of non-essential travel, including trips that his own security has warned him not to take."
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Although it is typical for ex-Cabinet officials to receive protection upon returning to civilian life, Pompeo's is enhanced "because he still faces a credible threat from Iran in connection with his role in the assassination of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani in 2020," NewsNation learned.
But unlike most of his predecessors or contemporaries, Pompeo is driving up expenses "because he’s ignoring the advice of his security and ultimately costing taxpayers."
The figures that NewsNation uncovered are significant.
"The cost of protecting Pompeo and one of his aides ballooned in 2021 from nearly $700,000 to more than $2 million each month. About 90% of those public dollars go to Pompeo’s security," NewsNation found. "That $2 million mostly covers 'vehicle and travel costs for Pompeo’s security agents and his own extensive travel for paid speeches and public events,' according to the documents obtained by NewsNation."
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NewsNation noted that Pompeo, who prior to serving in the State Department was a Republican Congressman from Kansas and then director of the Central Intelligence Agency, rakes in at least $100,000 for each appearance. Pompeo is also rumored to be building up his brand for a possible presidential run in 2024.
NewsNation also revealed that Pompeo's bills prompted Congress to" double" the discretionary spending that funds ex-officials' personal protective units.
"Before this year, Congress limited how much it spent on security for former state department officials to $15 million annually," NewsNation wrote. "After Pompeo’s detail nearly doubled that amount, Congress rewrote its budget, this year providing as much as $30 million."
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