President-elect Donald Trump confirmed Sunday Retired Marine Gen. James Mattis is being considered for secretary of defense.
Trump’s transition team reported that Vice-President elect Mike Pence and Trump were “very impressed” by Mattis and called him the “real deal” in a readout provided to reporters. The readout continued, “They had an incredibly in-depth conversation on plans for national security. The discussion included ISIS, the Middle East, North Korea, China, NATO and other hotspots around the world.”
Mattis served 44 years in the Marine Corps, and generally remains adamantly against getting involved in politics.
Mattis retired from the USMC in 2013, and would need a special congressional waiver if nominated by Trump to serve as defense secretary. Title 10 of the U.S. Code requires the secretary of defense be out of military uniform for a period longer than 7 years to reinforce the norm of civilian control.
Trump reportedly offered the national security advisor post to Retired Army Gen. Michael Flynn, who served as Trump’s top national security surrogate throughout the campaign.
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