Pompeo's run for president in 2024 fool's errand
Published: Jan 27, 2021 07:43 PM

Pompeo Photo:AFP

Former US secretary of state Mike Pompeo will take a new job with the Hudson Institute, a conservative nonprofit think tank based in Washington. The new position will give him "a platform to stay active in policy discussions and potentially run for president in 2024," US news website Axios reported on Wednesday. Yet the hard truth is he does not have a snowball's chance in hell of running for president in 2024. 

Former US president Donald Trump, the Republican Party establishment and Democrats all harbor a bitter hatred for Pompeo. During his term in office, Pompeo was busy pleasing Trump. Still, the GOP establishment was discontented with his words and deeds. 

In the final days of Trump's presidency, Pompeo betrayed the president by participating in a discussion over the use of the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from power. Trump must have known it. As a man who is known for his habit of haggling over every penny, Trump will definitely not share his voter base with Pompeo. 

The Democratic Party's aversion toward Pompeo is too obvious. The public opinion in the US is filled with the overwhelming belief that he was the worst secretary of state in the country's history. He can find no support from anyone now. Thus, there is a very slim chance he might run for president four years from now. 

Moreover, there has never been a US president who participated in the presidential race as a think tank research fellow. US presidents were mostly senators or governors before finally taking power. Trump is an exception for becoming president as a businessman. But yet there is no case of a research fellow becoming a US president. 

Even if the "revolving door" phenomenon is quite common in US politics, Pompeo will hardly become a government official again. He has served as a member of the US House of Representatives from Kansas, director of the Central Intelligence Agency and secretary of state. What other post would he still be willing to assume? There are only senator and president left. But given that he has already made an overdraft with all his credibility, neither choice is promising for him. 

Axios noted, "By aligning himself with the conservative think tank, Pompeo will keep close to the debates - and donors - that matter to the Republican Party." It sounds like Pompeo may still play a role in US decision-making circles. Yet the reality is simply opposite. 

Frankly speaking, Pompeo himself has no influence at all. He seemed to have some power in the past four years. That is all because of his position as  the US secretary of state. Without the title, his rhetoric has no weight. 

It is believed that Hudson is accepting Pompeo not because of his values. The think tank may only want to signal that as a base camp and stronghold for conservatism in the US, it won't cast a cold eye on conservatives who are standing at bay and have nowhere to go. 

Pompeo does have one value for Hudson - he knows how things worked in the Trump administration. But when it comes to scholarship, Pompeo is not the person who has relevant capabilities. 

There is basically no turn for the better for Pompeo's career path in sight. He himself may not believe so. But that's it. He is despised by a majority of Americans for his lack of ability and for his arrogant, selfish personality. No political force will likely endorse him, let alone financial groups. In US politics, capital investment always comes with demands for payback. But with Pompeo, people now find it is pointless to support him anymore. 

The author is a research fellow at the Institute of American Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. opinion@globaltimes.com.cn

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