SASC Leadership Announce Nomination Hearing for Deputy Secretary of Defense

U.S. Sens. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) and Jack Reed (D-R.I.), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, today announced the committee will expedite the process to hold a nomination hearing for David Norquist, whom President Trump intends to nominate as Deputy Secretary of Defense.

The committee, in its traditional role of providing advice and consent, will hold Mr. Norquist’s nomination hearing on Wednesday, July 24, at 10 a.m.

“The Deputy Secretary of Defense is the number-two civilian role at the Pentagon, so it’s incredibly important to receive a formal nomination and confirm the nominee quickly. But while there is a sense of urgency, the committee must thoroughly consider nominations that we receive,” Chairman Inhofe said. “Mr. Norquist has been performing the duties of Deputy Secretary for the past several months to maintain stability and continuity in the Department. I believe Mr. Norquist is more than capable of fulfilling the requirements of this critical position. Next Wednesday’s hearing is an opportunity for committee members to ask specific questions of Mr. Norquist to more fully assess how he will work to run an efficient, effective Pentagon if confirmed.”

“I commend Chairman Inhofe for scheduling this hearing and look forward to discussing issues with Mr. Norquist. It is very troubling that there are almost 20 top jobs across the Pentagon and military that are vacant or being filled on a temporary basis. The President needs to realize this is a significant problem and quickly nominate qualified nominees for these key positions,” said Ranking Member Reed.

Under committee rules, the Senate Armed Services Committee typically waits seven days between receiving a formal nomination and voting out the nominee. Over the years, the committee has waived this rule in appropriate cases, most recently for Dr. Mark Esper, nominated to serve as Secretary of Defense. Because of the importance of the role, the committee will waive the seven-day rule for Mr. Norquist’s nomination.