At least four candidates to become the next secretary of defense have said no, Foreign Policy reported.
That includes Sens. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), former Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) and retired Gen. Jack Keane.
“The sacrifices associated with becoming secretary of defense deter most qualified candidates,” Loren Thompson of the Lexington Institute said, according to the report.
Difficulties continue to mount for Acting Secretary Patrick Shanahan, as NBC News and other outlets have reported on testy confrontations with key Senate Republicans, including Graham.
Senate Armed Services Chairman Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) recently backtracked and said he was joking when he said Shanahan lacks the humility to be confirmed to the position permanently, as On Base reported.
Acting Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan meets with a congressional delegation led by U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham, on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference Feb. 16. DOD photo by Lisa Ferdinando