The Senate’s top defense lawmaker thinks President Donald Trump will nominate a permanent Defense Secretary soon — but that it won’t likely be the man currently leading the Pentagon, Military Times reported Tuesday.
“We need to have a Secretary of Defense, and I anticipate we will,” Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., head of the chamber’s Armed Services Committee, told reporters, the news outlet reported.
“If you’re an acting, you don’t have the force you need in the office … I think (Trump) is going to nominate somebody.”
The White House has signaled the president could without a permanent replacement for James Mattis, who resigned in December over policy and philosophical differences with Trump.
Patrick Shanahan got the nod as acting Secretary of Defense Jan. 1, and Trump has said Shanahan “could be there for a long time” though he hasn't indicated if he'll nominate him for the permanent Cabinet role.
But Inhofe doesn’t think it’ll be Shanahan who ultimately gets the nomination, bluntly noting he lacks the “humility” of Mattis, though he didn’t elaborate his concerns beyond that, Military Times reported.
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