Tillerson nomination clears a Senate hurdle

Posted at 6:31 PM, Jan 30, 2017

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s nomination of Rex Tillerson for secretary of state has cleared a hurdle in the Senate.

The 56-43 vote on Monday puts Tillerson’s bid to be the nation’s chief diplomat on track for confirmation later this week.

The vote also sets the stage for a lengthy debate over the president’s order banning travel from specific Muslim-majority countries.

Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York pressed unsuccessfully for a delay in the vote until Tillerson answered for Trump’s travel ban order.

The order bars individuals from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the U.S. for 90 days. Trump has said the move is aimed at protecting the nation against extremists.