Campaigns

Mike Pompeo says he is not running for Senate in Kansas in 2020

Former congressman says he will be secretary of State as long as Trump wants him in that role

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said a 2020 campaign for Senate in Kansas is “ruled out.” (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Thursday that he was ruling out running for Senate in Kansas in 2020 — at least as long as he is still the top diplomat.

“I love Kansas. I’m going to be the secretary of State as long as President Trump gives me the opportunity to serve as America’s senior diplomat,” Pompeo told NBC’s “Today Show” when asked about a possible race for the seat being vacated by the retirement of Sen. Pat Roberts.

“I love doing what I’m doing, and I have 75,000 great warriors out and around the world trying to deliver for the American people,” he said.

Pompeo was then asked to make clear that his answer meant he was ruling out the Senate campaign.

“It’s ruled out,” Pompeo said. “I’m here. I’m loving it.”

Senior Senate Republicans had made no secret in their interest in a Pompeo Senate run, including Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.

“At some point, [Pompeo] might decide he wants a different job and I wanted him to know we’d all be behind him if he did,” McConnell said in a Fox News interview on Feb. 5.

Days before that, Trump had seemed to effectively rule out a Senate bid by the top diplomat, who is also a former GOP House member from Kansas.

Watch: First 2020 Senate race ratings are here

Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call on your iPhone or your Android.