Top Pentagon personnel nominee withdraws after op-ed surfaces

Top Pentagon personnel nominee withdraws after op-ed surfaces
© Greg Nash

The nominee for the Pentagon's second-highest personnel role has withdrawn from consideration for the post after an op-ed he wrote for The Federalist surfaced, sources tell Politico.

A number of sources told the publication that J. David Patterson, who was nominated Jan. 9 for principal deputy undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, was withdrawing his name.

The withdrawal stems from a 2017 op-ed that Patterson wrote for the conservative website, in which Patterson and co-author A.D.P. Efferson blame mass killings on immigrants who fail to assimilate to American culture.


“One explanation for the rise in terrorist behavior in the United States is the insidious and significantly difficult-to-pinpoint problem of failure to assimilate into an adopted culture,” Patterson and Efferson wrote. “By growing evidence, promoting ‘multiculturalism’ is a major culprit. We certainly don’t discount the influence of ISIS’ ubiquitous propaganda, but to be compelling there must be a willing mind.”

Continuing, they added: “Multiculturalism is the antithesis of what the United States stands for and the foundational thinking of our founding fathers that sustains America as its own unique society."

Patterson was nominated to take on the No. 2 personnel position at the Pentagon behind Matthew Donovan, who is the undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness. Donovan's job is to assist and advise Defense Secretary Mark EsperMark EsperCORRECTED: Overnight Defense: COVID-19 stymies effort to study sexual assault at military academies | Biden, Saudi king speak ahead of Khashoggi report Female generals' promotions held back over fears of Trump's response: report Overnight Defense: Army details new hair and grooming standards | DC National Guard chief says Pentagon restricted his authority before riot | Colorado calls on Biden not to move Space Command MORE with training and personnel matters, as well as “equal opportunity, morale, welfare, recreation, and quality of life matters," Politico reports. Donovan's deputy is supposed to help with these tasks.

Patterson retired from the Air Force in 1993 with rank of colonel, having been a fighter pilot in Vietnam. He has served in the Pentagon before, holding the position of principal deputy undersecretary in the comptroller’s office during George W. Bush's administration.

Patterson didn't return Politico's multiple requests for comments.

The Hill reached out to the White House and the Pentagon for comment.