US Senate confirms retired general Austin as Pentagon chief

General Lloyd Austin.

United States Senate on Friday confirmed retired General Lloyd Austin as the new secretary of defence.

Austin is the first African American to run the department.
The Senate voted on an overwhelmingly bipartisan basis to confirm President Joe Biden’s Defense secretary nominee Austin, CNN reported. The vote was 93-2.

President Biden signed a bill which provided a waiver to permit Austin to serve as secretary of Defense in his administration, into law.

Yesterday, the House approved a waiver to permit Austin to serve as the secretary of defence in the Biden administration.

Austin was required to gain a waiver from a law requiring a defence secretary to wait seven years after active-duty service before taking the job, CNN reported.

President Joe Biden’s pick for defense secretary had to win two votes: one from both chambers of Congress to grant the waiver and another from the Senate to confirm him for the position.

Austin will be one of the most prominent members of Biden’s Cabinet. The secretary of defense is in control of the nation’s largest government agency, commanding troops around the world and the complicated internal workings of the Pentagon that make it one of the world’s most formidable bureaucracies.

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