One of the GOP senators from Kris Kobach’s home state said Tuesday that the Senate would not be able to confirm the Kansas Republican if President Donald Trump tapped him for a cabinet post.
Kobach, the former Kansas secretary of state, has been mentioned as a potential candidate for an array of immigration-related positions since President Donald Trump pulled his nominee for the director of Immigration Customs Enforcement and announced the departure of Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen.
But Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kansas, said he doesn’t believe the Republican-controlled Senate could confirm his fellow Kansan, who has gained national notoriety for championing stronger restrictions on immigration.
“Don’t go there. We can’t confirm him,” Roberts whispered to The Kansas City Star when asked about Kobach Tuesday on his way into a Senate vote.
“I never said that to you,” Roberts added, despite the fact that another reporter was present and The Star had not agreed to an off record conversation.
A former Trump adviser told The Star last week that Trump “knows that keeping the Senate is vital to passing his agenda next term or stopping the Dem agenda.” Making Kobach an adviser on immigration would help Trump keep the Senate in GOP hands and also help the president pursue his immigration agenda, the adviser said.
Such a sub-cabinet post, if it were run out of the White House, would not be subject to confirmation.
“It’s a win win.”