01/21/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 01/21/2021 15:01
Washington, DC-January 21, 2021....Congressman Steve Womack (AR-3) released the following statement after voting to approve a waiver to allow the nomination of retired General Lloyd Austin for Secretary of Defense to advance to the Senate floor. A waiver is needed since Gen. (ret.) Austin has not been retired from active duty for the seven years required under the National Security Act of 1947. This is not the first time a waiver has been requested - Womack also previously approved the same measure for retired Marine Gen. Jim Mattis, who was nominated and served as Defense Secretary during the Trump Administration.
'While I find fault with many of the first actions of the Biden Administration, the nomination of Lloyd Austin to be Secretary of Defense is certainly not one of them. I can say with confidence that he's a principled leader of the highest standard. He was a steady hand during his time as CENTCOM commander-where we worked closely together-and understands our troops and military needs. I would expect nothing less from a member of the Long Gray Line. Today, I voted for a waiver to allow his nomination to move forward in the Senate. I urge a swift confirmation, so we can quickly continue our work to support our men and women in uniform, combat rising Chinese and Russian aggression, and modernize the force.'
Congressman Steve Womack (AR-3) has represented Arkansas's Third Congressional District since 2011. He is a member of the House Appropriations Committee.