Trump replaces federal personnel director

Trump replaces federal personnel director
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump directed Cohen to lie to Congress about plans to build Trump Tower in Moscow during 2016 campaign: report DC train system losing 0k per day during government shutdown Senate Republicans eye rules change to speed Trump nominees MORE on Friday abruptly replaced the director of federal personnel with a top official at the Office of Management and Budget, according to the White House.

The White House said in a brief statement Margaret Weichert, who serves as deputy director for management at the White House Office of Management and Budget, will helm the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) in an acting capacity "in addition to her current duties."

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Weichert will replace Jeff Pon, a business executive who had been in the post just since March. A White House official said Pon resigned but did not provide a reason for his departure. 

In an interview with The Washington Post, Weichert said the decision is in line with Trump's "management agenda." She has played a key role in the administration's effort to reform the civil service.

"What I would say is that the broader objectives of the president's management agenda are focusing on driving and really modernizing how we think about governing and our workforce in the 21st century. The president wants me to continue the work that we are doing around the president's management agenda," said Weichert.

The OPM is an independent federal agency tasked with overseeing the federal civilian workforce. Its previous Senate-confirmed director, Katherine Archuelta, was forced to resign in 2015 after it was revealed that 20 million people's personal information was stolen in a major data breach.

Trump's announcement was widely overshadowed by the confirmation battle surrounding Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

The announcement was made during undeclared Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsOvernight Defense: Trump unveils new missile defense plan | Dems express alarm | Shutdown hits Day 27 | Trump cancels Pelosi foreign trip | Senators offer bill to prevent NATO withdrawal McConnell blocks bill to reopen most of government Bipartisan senators reintroduce bill to prevent Trump from withdrawing from NATO MORE's (R-Maine) highly anticipated floor speech, during which she announced she would vote for the judge.

—Updated at 5:02 p.m.