Senate

Senate confirms Trump’s deputy Defense secretary

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The Senate on Tuesday night approved President Trump’s pick for the No. 2 Pentagon post.
 
Senators confirmed David Norquist to be the deputy Defense secretary by voice vote, completing a key item on the chamber’s pre-recess to-do list.
 
Norquist had been acting deputy Defense secretary since January, but stepped aside for the confirmation process. He has been the Pentagon’s comptroller since 2017.{mosads}
 
Norquist is the latest Pentagon official to be confirmed as senators try to wrap up their work before the August recess, with lawmakers away from Washington until early September.
 
The Senate confirmed Mark Esper to be Defense secretary and Gen. Mark Milley to be the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff last week.
 
Senators predicted Norquist would be easily confirmed after a largely uneventful confirmation hearing earlier this month, putting his nomination on a glide path. 
 
Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman James Inhofe (R-Okla.) said he had “strong feelings” about Norquist. 

“In fact, I remember telling the president a long time ago it doesn’t matter who ends up being secretary of Defense so long as you have Norquist in here helping,” Inhofe said. 

“Secretary Norquist, we face many challenges that require strong leadership and the ability to make tough decisions. I am very confident you can make those tough decisions,” the committee’s top Democrat, Sen. Jack Reed (R.I.), added. 

Tags deputy Defense secretary Donald Trump Jack Reed James Inhofe Mark Esper Pentagon
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