The White House on Monday formally nominated Mark Esper as the next defense secretary. Esper is currently serving as acting secretary of defense; he stepped into the role last month after Patrick Shanahan departed amid reports of domestic violence within his family. The Trump administration previously announced plans to nominate Esper for the role, which has not been permanently filled since former Defense Secretary James Mattis resigned in December. Esper, a West Point graduate and Gulf War veteran, has served as a top civilian Pentagon official, a lobbyist for defense contractor Raytheon, and an adviser to Republican lawmakers. The Senate Armed Services Committee will hold an expedited confirmation hearing for Esper on Tuesday.
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