Former CIA director and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is also likely to run for president.
People called him a “hard conservative”.
In our extended interview, I give him a hard time about it.
“Conservative” once meant promoting limited government. But lately Republicans have pushed new regulations and spending to increase America’s debt more.
Pompeo also surprised me that Republicans spent so much under former President Donald Trump. He surprised me again that entitlements have to be cut and we no We need to spend more on our military. That was refreshing.
Then we talked about borders.
“Immigrants made America,” I point out.
“I’m an immigrant,” Pompeo responded. “My ancestors came through a legal process. That’s the difference.”
But today, I point out, “legal process” is almost impossible for an ambitious person who wants to work. “You may be Enter after 12 years of waiting!”
“Whatever the rules are…you have to enforce them,” Pompeo responded.
“Shouldn’t we change the rules?” I ask.
“I actually think it’s time to take a break,” Pompeo said. Today, people apply for asylum and then stay there until their request is accepted or rejected. When Pompeo was secretary of state, he says he told Mexican officials, “You’re not going to caravan these people through your country. We’re sending them back to you.”
President Joe Biden has reversed that policy. “You’re now seeing 4 million illegal immigrants in just 24 months,” Pompeo said. “It will fundamentally change the nature of our country… drugs have come across our borders. There is not much difference between a cartel leader and a jihad leader.”
“Why aren’t drugs legalized?” I ask. “Then the cartel leaders wouldn’t exist!”
“It’s a terrible idea,” Pompeo responded. “You see the destruction we have today in our drug culture.”
“Because it’s illegal!” I push back.
“It’s not,” Pompeo responded. “There are too many products available. Family firms have begun to compete in ways that are fundamentally dangerous to the United States.”
His answer makes no sense. Families quarrel, and drugs are sent despite Our drug war. War creates a black market that Reasons crime. There are no alcohol “cartels” just because we are the end forbidden
But I won’t convince Pompeo. Or you, perhaps.
I ask Pompeo why America needs 54,000 troops in Japan and 36,000 in Germany. “We won those wars! Now those countries must defend themselves.”
Pompeo said Xi Jinping is the single greatest threat in our nation’s history. If we brought all the troops home, it would “put the American people at great risk.”
Pompeo called Edward Snowden “a traitor” who should be executed. Snowden stole documents from the National Security Agency that showed how our government illegally spies on Americans.
I call Snowden a hero who risked his freedom and career to reveal the truth.
Pompeo says Snowden exposed Americans’ secrets at risk. But our spies often overestimate their importance. For example, the NSA claims that its extensive surveillance has stopped 54 terrorist attacks. Then the number comes down to seven. Then a government review concluded that mass surveillance did not stop a single attack.
“You just can’t steal American secrets,” Pompeo said. “If you find something illegal, there’s a process to correct it.”
But the homes of those who used the process were raided – their careers ended. I understand why Snowden sneaked out of the country.
Another area where Pompeo and I disagree is Trump’s tariffs.
“Tariffs mainly penalize American consumers,” I point out. Tariff products are more expensive.
“Tariffs are a very blunt tool,” Pompeo acknowledged, but they “address a very real challenge. How do you stop an adversary nation from screwing you over in their trade relationship?”
The Chinese cheat. They steal intellectual property. But tariffs didn’t stop it. The Chinese also foolishly subsidize some industries. But we do!
Free trade benefits everyone. That’s one reason I’m a libertarian.
Pompeo wants to cut the government. Why is he not a libertarian?
“I grew up a libertarian,” he says. “The idea of less government power for the American people is something that is very near and dear to my heart.”
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