Acting Def. Secretary Resigns Following Coverage Of Domestic Violence Allegation
Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan was pulled on Tuesday as President Donald Trump’s nominee to permanently fill the position, according to The New York Times.
Trump announced his decision via Twitter, praising Shanahan for his work with the administration.
As Shanahan’s replacement, the president said he has chosen Mark T. Esper for acting defense secretary. The Times noted that Esper is a former Raytheon executive and currently serves as the secretary of the Army.
Shanahan’s departure follows reports that the FBI was looking into a domestic violence incident between the Trump administration official and his then-wife, Kimberley, which involved both parties telling police they had been punched by the other.
In response to the reports, Shanahan denied ever having hit his ex-wife and said in a statement that what happened “is not dissimilar to those of the many families facing the difficult challenges that come when a loved one struggles with substance abuse and other emotional issues. I wish nothing but the best for her and regret that my children’s privacy has been violated and they are being forced to relive a tragic situation that we have worked so hard as a family to put behind us.”
The Times noted that Shanahan “was widely viewed as acquiescing to the White House and other government officials, including John Bolton and Mike Pompeo, the secretary of state” during his time as acting secretary.