There are nearly 150 job openings at the Pentagon as a result of Obama administration appointees leaving the Department of Defense because of the transition to President Donald Trump's first term.
According to The Washington Times, 16 of former President Barack Obama's 163 political appointees remain in their Pentagon jobs. Amid a hostile political climate, many of those vacancies could stay empty for a while.
"I imagine DOD cares more about getting people on board than what a nominee's vote count is," James Carafano of The Heritage Foundation told the Times.
"DOD has to get down to the business of rebuilding the military. They don't have time for political posturing by factions in Congress that are upset about how the American people voted."
The Pentagon houses 25,000 workers, so the number of political appointment vacancies is relatively small. But the openings demonstrate the tension in Washington between Republicans, which control both the executive and legislative branches, and Democrats, who are fighting everything Trump does.
Retired Gen. James Mattis was confirmed as secretary of defense on Jan. 20, the day Trump was sworn into office.
"President Trump and Secretary Mattis need their team to be in place," former Republican aide Jim Dolbow told the Times.
The Associated Press reported Thursday there are several hundred vacancies in the Trump administration, which has forced the White House to play catch-up as it searches for and vets nominees for government posts.
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