Trump Officially Picks Exxon Mobil Chief Executive Rex Tillerson As Secretary Of State
Despite mostly everyone knowing President-elect’s pick for Secretary of State would be Rex Tillerson, Trump made it official announcing today that Tillerson will indeed be America’s next secretary of state.
As chief executive of Exxon Mobil, Tillerson has had several business dealings globally; however, this may work against him in his confirmation proceedings. The Washington Post reported:
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“Since Tillerson’s name emerged as a candidate for the post, leading Republicans have expressed reservations about his years of work in Russia and the Middle East on behalf of the multinational petroleum company.”
The New York Times pointed out the possible conflicts of interest Tillerson would have as Secretary of State. If sanctions against Russia were lifted, Exxon Mobil would surely benefit as it has billions of dollars staked in deals in Russia. NYT reported:
“Exxon Mobil has various projects afoot in Russia that are allowed under American sanctions. But others have been ground to a halt by the sanctions, including a deal with the Russian state oil company to explore and pump in Siberia that could be worth tens of billions of dollars.”
Even better is the fact Tillerson seems to have a cozy relationship with Russia as he earned a friendship award from them. To give an idea of how friendly Tillerson may be towards Russia, he said at Exxon’s 2014 annual meeting:
“We do not support sanctions, generally, because we don’t find them effective unless they are very well implemented comprehensibly, and that’s a very hard thing to do. So we always encourage the people who are making those decisions to consider the very broad collateral damage of who they are really harming.”
He also said in 2015, “We’ll await a time in which the sanctions environment changes or the sanctions requirements change.”