WASHINGTON (AP) The top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee says Donald Trump's choice for secretary of state should make clear how he plans to pivot from the "mindset of oilman" to that of the nation's top diplomat.
Sen. Ben Cardin made the distinction at Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson's confirmation hearing Wednesday, saying there's a difference between being driven by profits and serving as the president's top adviser on critical foreign policy issues.
Cardin also criticized Tillerson for not mentioning in his prepared opening statement to the committee didn't address Russia's meddling in the 2016 election as detailed last week by U.S. intelligence agencies. The president-elect has been dismissive of the findings.
Democrats say they are concerned about Tillerson's business ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin. They are expected to press Tillerson on whether he agrees that more and tougher sanctions against Russia are needed. Putin awarded Tillerson the Order of Friendship in 2013.