Aug 4, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Nearly $6,000 bottle of whiskey gifted to Pompeo reported missing

Mike Pompeo in 2020.

Mike Pompeo in 2020. Photo: Elijah Nouvelage/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A bottle of whiskey worth $5,800 that was gifted to former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo by the Japanese government in 2019 cannot be located, according to a notice filed by the State Department.

Driving the news: The notice states that the department is looking into the situation and there is an "ongoing inquiry" into the bottle's whereabouts.

  • A representative for Pompeo told the Associated Press that he, "has no knowledge of the gift and has not been contacted by anyone regarding an investigation of it.”

The big picture: While U.S. officials can keep gifts valued under $390, more expensive items must be turned over to the government or purchased by the official, according to the New York Times.

  • The prohibition on accepting large gifts, ingrained in the Constitution, is intended to prevent American officials from falling under foreign influence, per the Times.

Of note: Pompeo was traveling to Saudi Arabia on the day Japanese officials gave the bottle to the State Department, making it unclear whether Pompeo ever personally received the gift, the Times writes.

Go deeper