Allred Votes for General Austin to be Considered for Secretary of Defense

January 21, 2021
Press Release
Rep. Allred met with Gen. Austin Twice Before Voting on Waiver

Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Colin Allred (TX-32) voted to provide a waiver to the seven-year prohibition window, allowing retired General Lloyd Austin III to be considered to serve as Secretary of Defense. Allred has worked to ensure Gen. Austin is committed to civilian control of the military, joining his colleagues in writing to the Secretary-designate and meeting with him twice.

“Throughout this process, I have been diligent about ensuring that General Austin is committed to maintaining civilian control of the military,” said Allred. “After speaking with General Austin twice and receiving his commitments on civilian appointments to key leadership positions, I know he is dedicated to preserving this norm at the Pentagon and is willing to work with Congress to ensure accountability. General Austin is well-qualified for this role and I congratulate him on his historic nomination.” 

Waiver Background

In order to retain civilian oversight of the military, there is a limitation against appointing a Secretary of Defense who has been an active duty member of the Armed Forces within seven years of their appointment. For a nominee, who has served within that time period, Congress must pass a waiver allowing them to move forward in the confirmation process and be considered for the role of Secretary of Defense. This waiver was most recently used in 2017, when Congress voted to allow General James Mattis to serve as Secretary of Defense.