The Senate Armed Services Committee has scheduled its confirmation hearing for Acting Defense Secretary Mark Esper to become the next permanent DOD chief July 16 if the White House delivers his formal nomination by the preceding day, Defense News reported Thursday.
Committee Chairman James Inhofe (R-Okla.) said Thursday he had agreement from the panel’s other members to hold the hearing next Tuesday, waiving a traditional seven-day waiting period between a received nomination and when a confirmation begins, according to the report.
“If we get the official nomination from the White House on Monday, we will have the hearing on Tuesday,” Inhofe said.
The committee has already received Esper’s advance policy questions and background check paperwork, according to the report.
Committee Ranking Member Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.) acknowledged the need to move the nomination forward quickly.
“Because of the vacancy, we are trying, without cutting any corners, to move as expeditiously as possible,” he said.
David Perdue (R-Ga.), chairman of the Sea Power subcommittee, echoed the call to hold Esper’s confirmation hearing quickly.
“I’m glad to see we’re doing that. I know the president is pushing for that and Sen. Reed and Sen. Inhofe want that as well,” he said.
DOD photo by Lisa Ferdinando