Tags: patrick shanahan | trump | defense secretary

Report: Trump Wary of Formally Naming Patrick Shanahan to Defense Post

Report: Trump Wary of Formally Naming Patrick Shanahan to Defense Post

Acting Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP)

By    |   Tuesday, 11 June 2019 05:05 PM

President Donald Trump is apparently having second thoughts about formally nominating Patrick Shanahan as defense secretary, asking confidants last week in Normandy about possible alternatives, according to four people familiar with the conversations.

"He has no champion," a person close to the president told NBC News, referring to Shanahan. "No one is fighting for him."

The White House on May 9 said that Trump would nominate Shanahan, 56, to succeed James Mattis. He had been acting defense secretary since January.

However, President Trump has not yet presented Shanahan's nomination to the Senate for confirmation, though the White House said that would be done on May 18, NBC News reports.

During D-Day commemoration ceremonies last week in Normandy, the president queried at least three people on Shanahan and sought out other candidates, the people told the network.

One possible replacement mentioned was Army Secretary Mark Esper, whom Trump considered earlier on for the post.

Asked Tuesday about Shanahan’s nomination, Trump said that he "put it out officially" weeks ago and that now the acting secretary "has to go through the process."

Lt. Col. Joe Buccino, a spokesman for Shanahan, said in a statement: "Acting Secretary Shanahan is focused solely on our military operations, the highest quality care for our service members and their families, and implementation of the national defense strategy."

But one Trump administration official, National Security Adviser John Bolton, supports Shanahan, according to NBC. He views the acting secretary as someone who "will go along with whatever Trump wants."

He and Mattis regularly clashed.

"Bolton is the big winner if Shanahan gets it," the person close to Trump said.

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President Donald Trump is apparently having second thoughts about formally nominating Patrick Shanahan as defense secretary, asking confidants last week in Normandy about possible alternatives, according to four people familiar with the conversations.
patrick shanahan, trump, defense secretary
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2019-05-11
Tuesday, 11 June 2019 05:05 PM
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