US President Donald Trump said Tuesday his pick for defense secretary, Patrick Shanahan, has withdrawn, leaving the Pentagon without a permanent boss for more than six months amid a ratcheting of tensions in the Mideast.
Shanahan "has decided not to go forward with his confirmation process so that he can devote more time to his family," Trump tweeted after Shanahan faced questions over his past personal life and an allegation of domestic violence.
Trump said the army secretary, Mark Esper, will come in as acting secretary of defense.
There hasn't been a full secretary of defense since the resignation of James Mattis in December last year.
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