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Tillerson Asks State Department to Put Politics Aside In First Address

Tillerson Asks State Department to Put Politics Aside In First Address”

The Senate is set Monday to vote on moving forward on President Trump's nomination of Rex Tillerson to lead the State Department.

"I know this was a hotly contested election and we do not all feel the same way about the outcome", Tillerson said in his maiden address to the State Department officials.

The Sierra Club described Tillerson's confirmation as "unconscionable".

Joe Manchin, one of the four Democrat senators who voted for Mr Tillerson, said the former oil chief would bring a "unique perspective to the State department" and provide "wise counsel and objective advice to the President on our nation's foreign policy".

Tillerson will now assume the role as the country's top diplomat amid a turbulent time in US foreign affairs. "Rex Tillerson's record, friendships, and business interests clearly foreshadow the unsafe oil diplomacy he will pursue as Secretary of State". Past secretaries of State came from government positions or from roles in the USA military, or were scholars of foreign affairs.

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Tillerson came under criticism during his confirmation hearings for refusing to condemn governments with confirmed records of human rights abuses, including Russia, Saudi Arabia and the Philippines. "Let us extend respect to each other, especially when we may disagree", Tillerson said. John Hoeven (R-N.D.) told E&E News.

"I think it will be good for US-Russia relations because he [Tillerson] is well informed, and the decisions he makes will be made from experience, and not out of ignorance".

"A vote for Rex Tillerson is a vote for climate disaster", claimed a leader of 350.org, an environmental group that advocates for "a just, prosperous, and equitable world built with the power of ordinary people".

"The Senators voting to confirm Rex Tillerson have clearly left their spines at home", the organization said in a statement. It was a thinly-veiled reference to a dissent memo that has been signed by unprecedented numbers of diplomats and other employees objecting to President Trump's new order suspending travel to the United States for citizens of seven predominantly Muslim nations and ceasing refugee admissions for the time being.

After the 64-year-old oilman's nomination was confirmed by the Senate, he headed to the White House, where Trump formally named the political newcomer Washington's next top diplomat.

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Goodbye to the climate envoy position?

"As Secretary, I will deploy the talent and resources of the State Department in the most efficient ways possible".

"We took some unprecedented actions today due to the unprecedented obstruction on the part of our colleagues", he also said.

"I'm sure that Tillerson will want to be hands-on in conducting energy diplomacy, and it would be a little odd to delete an energy bureau under a Tillerson stewardship of the department", said Bodnar, now with the Rocky Mountain Institute, a Colorado think tank.

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