Legal Experts are Split on Whether Trump Must Name a New Permanent Pentagon Chief by Missy Ryan and Dan Lamothe – Washington Post
The Trump administration’s contention that Acting Defense Secretary Patrick M. Shanahan can stay in his new role “indefinitely” without being nominated as the permanent Pentagon chief could face constitutional challenges, according to legal experts, who were split on whether those protests would go anywhere.
Shanahan took over the job Jan. 1 following the resignation of Jim Mattis, and has held the deputy defense secretary job since July 2017. On Friday, a U.S. official told reporters that Shanahan could serve in the acting position indefinitely at Trump’s discretion.
Trump claimed late last month that “everybody and his uncle” and “everybody and his aunt” has interest in becoming defense secretary. He added that Shanahan “could be there for a long time,” but did not say whether he meant in an acting capacity…