Biden introduces historic defense secretary nominee as Congress debates waiver

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President-elect Joe Biden on Wednesday officially introduced his nominee to lead the Department of Defense, retired Gen. Lloyd Austin, who if confirmed would be the first African American to hold the post but whose nomination is already facing headwinds in Congress.

Austin, a former commander of U.S. Central Command, who retired from military service in 2016 after a nearly 40-year career, will need a waiver from Congress to lead the Pentagon given that he is less than seven years removed from active duty.

In their remarks, both Biden and Austin took note of the looming battle over the waiver Austin would require to serve as Secretary of Defense due to his recent retirement, stressing their belief in…

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