Lloyd Austin confirmed as US Defence Secretary
Washington, Jan 22 (IANS) Retired US Army general Lloyd Austin was on Friday confirmed as Secretary of Defence in the Joe Biden administration.
Austin received 93 votes in the Senate, while two votes went against him. The second Biden pick to be confirmed after Avril Haines who becomes the first woman to be Director of National Intelligence, Lloyd is the first African-American to be the chief at the Pentagon, the BBC reported.
His confirmation seemed to be on track after the Congress on Thursday approved a waiver to let him take the job. Under US law, military officers need a seven-year period after their retirement before they can become the Secretary of Defence, and Austin had only retired in 2016.
Previous President Donald Trump’s first Secretary of Defence, Lt Gen James Mattis (retd), had also received a Congressional waiver in 2016.