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Biden confirms Lloyd Austin as defense pick, but Democrats signal opposition DinarDailyUpdates?bg=330099&fg=FFFFFF&anim=1

Biden confirms Lloyd Austin as defense pick, but Democrats signal opposition

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Biden confirms Lloyd Austin as defense pick, but Democrats signal opposition Empty Biden confirms Lloyd Austin as defense pick, but Democrats signal opposition

Post by claud39 Tue Dec 08, 2020 7:53 pm

[size=40]Biden confirms Lloyd Austin as defense pick, but Democrats signal opposition[/size]

 December 08, 2020

President-elect Joe Biden has confirmed early reports that his pick for secretary of defense is retired Gen. Lloyd Austin, but some Democrats are voicing concerns over civilian control of the military.
“I’ve spent countless hours with him, in the field and in the White House Situation Room,” Biden wrote in a story for the Atlantic magazine.
“I’ve sought his advice, seen his command, and admired his calm and his character. He is the definition of a patriot,” the president-elect added, confirming assessments that Austin got the nod because of their past working relationship when Biden was vice president.
But already, some Democrats are indicating they are not willing to vote for an exception to a law that requires former members of the military to be retired for seven years before they serve as defense secretary.
“This is becoming a trend, and I don’t like it,” Hawaii Democratic Sen. Brian Schatz told Politico.
President Trump’s first defense secretary, Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis, was similarly four years retired when he got the nod to serve as secretary of defense.
His confirmation required a congressional exemption, only the second since 1950. Not even four years later, another nominee would face Democratic senators who once said they would not approve another exemption to the law that safeguards civilian control of the U.S. military.
“Waiving the law should happen no more than once in a generation,” Rhode Island Democrat Jack Reed told Mattis at his 2017 confirmation hearing. “Therefore, I will not support a waiver for future nominees.”
In his Atlantic story, Biden recounted numerous meetings with Austin in Iraq when he was vice president, making the case for the 41-year Army veteran to become the first black secretary of defense.
"Austin’s many strengths and his intimate knowledge of the Department of Defense and our government are uniquely matched to the challenges and crises we face. He is the person we need in this moment,” Biden wrote.
The former vice president argued that Austin’s drawdown of 150,000 troops from Iraq demonstrated his logistical prowess, a skill that will be needed for the coronavirus vaccine distribution. His knowledge of “the incredible cost of war” will help him to care for service members, and as a minority and leader, he will diversify the ranks of the Armed Forces.

“I hope that Congress will grant a waiver to Secretary-designate Austin, just as Congress did for Secretary Jim Mattis,” Biden wrote. “Given the immense and urgent threats and challenges our nation faces, he should be confirmed swiftly.”

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