America’s enemies should be worried. Mad Dog Mattis is coming to Washington:
The full Senate on Thursday afternoon approved legislation that would allow retired Marine Gen. James Mattis to serve as defense secretary in the administration of Donald Trump.
The Senate voted 81-17 to approve the legislation, clearing a 60-vote threshold. The bill will now advance to the House, where lawmakers will vote on it to pave the way for Mattis’ swift confirmation one week before the president-elect is inaugurated in Washington.
Earlier on Thursday, the Senate Committee on Armed Services approved the bill creating an exception for Mattis to serve in the top Pentagon post despite only being out of uniform for three years.
Current law mandates that military personnel be separated from the military for at least seven years to serve as secretary of defense. However, lawmakers, defense officials, and experts have signaled support for a waiver for Mattis to lead the Pentagon, given his qualifications.
Meanwhile, members of the House Committee on Armed Services met Thursday afternoon to markup the legislation and were still debating it when the Senate passed its version. Mattis was initially supposed to appear before the committee, but House Democrats later said that he had been blocked from doing so by the Trump transition team.
Mattis promised to build strong alliances and help rebuild the military. Perhaps no one is more qualified.