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WASHINGTON (CBSMiami) – Senators fired challenging questions at Mike Pompeo.

The CIA director is asking to be confirmed as President Trump’s new secretary of state.

Pompeo fielded questions on some of the toughest issues in foreign policy during his confirmation hearing to become Secretary of State.

Pompeo was grilled on whether the U.S. should pull out of the Iran nuclear deal

“I want to fix this deal. That’s my objective,” Pompeo said.

And whether he can imagine a ground invasion in North Korea to end the country’s nuclear program.

“Could I imagine one.. yes, yes, I could,” he said.

Some lawmakers worried about hawkish leanings of the president’s inner circle.

But Pompeo said diplomacy is always number one.

“At the forefront of our mind is how can we find solutions that achieve the American objective but avoid us putting a single American in harm’s way,” he said.

One of the big questions on Capitol Hill was whether Pompeo will be able to hold his ground against President Trump and to assert his opinion when he disagrees.

Asked about Russia, Pompeo said he will take a tough line.

“I take a back seat to no one with my views of the threat that is presented to America from Russia,
said Pompeo.

Pompeo would not offer his opinion on the investigation into Russian interference with the 2016 presidential election but he did confirm he was interviewed by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

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