Mitch McConnell wants Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to consider joining him in the Senate.
"I'd sure like for him to think about" running for U.S. Senate in Kansas in 2020, McConnell, the Senate majority leader, told Fox News on Tuesday. Reports have said Republicans want Pompeo to replace GOP Sen. Pat Roberts, who will retire after next year. The secretary of State previously represented Kansas in the House.
McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, said he wanted Pompeo "to know that we'd all be behind him" if he sought a Senate seat. However, the majority leader added that "there's no urgency for him to make that decision."
Pompeo, 55, was CIA director from January 2017 to April 2018, when he became secretary of State. He spent six years in Congress.
President Donald Trump, for his part, does not think his top diplomat will leave. The president told CBS' "Face the Nation" that he asked Pompeo whether he would depart, and "he says he's absolutely not leaving."
Republicans hold a 53-47 majority in the Senate. Twenty-two GOP-held seats are up for grabs next year, versus 12 seats represented by Democrats.
Kansas has elected Republicans in recent statewide offices than Democrats. However, Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly defeated Republican Trump ally Kris Kobach in November's gubernatorial contest.