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NATO Ambassador Kay Bailey Hutchison Vouches For Fellow Texan Rex Tillerson In Interview

Amid ongoing turmoil at the State Department, U.S. Ambassador to NATO Kay Bailey Hutchison supported her boss, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in an interview Thursday night

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump’s nominee for ambassador to NATO Kay Bailey Hutchison testifies at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on her nomination on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S. July 20, 2017.

U.S. Ambassador to NATO Kay Bailey Hutchison vouched for her new boss, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, in an interview Thursday night.

"There is a lot going on that is good, that is positive," Hutchison told Washington Post columnist David Ignatuis in an interview in the nation’s capital.

Hutchison is the lead diplomat to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, an alliance between the United States and European countries dating back to the post-World War II era. She is now based in Brussels.

Hutchison's remarks come a week after reports surfaced of Tillerson calling U.S. President Donald Trump "a moron" in July. The Department of State is at the center of escalating nuclear tension in both North Korea and Iran.

Hutchison and Tillerson have ties since her days as a senator from Texas when he was the CEO of ExxonMobile. They are also both graduates of The University of Texas at Austin.

"I've known him for a long time, he's a Texan, was a great CEO of Exxon and as he has said, he's not a Washington person and I think everybody is getting used to his styles and things," Hutchison said.

She also briefly touched on recent rumors of tension between Tillerson and President Donald Trump, saying, "He and the president are working very well on the foreign policy issues, which I'm a part, and I am so pleased to be at NATO."

Hutchison said after the Cold War, there was a lull when we thought the world would be peaceful and easy, but that is not the case anymore.

"NATO has been a glue that has endured through hard times,” she said, adding that now that tensions with Russia are again mounting, she feels “blessed” that “every top person in [the] administration, especially the president, understands the importance of NATO."

Hutchison said the body is facing “a different set of risks,” such as cyber interference from Russia, that it is looking into in order to understand and defend against.

"They are trying to break down the bonds of the NATO alliance by putting out false news," Hutchison said. "They are playing the long game."

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