June 18, 2019 / 6:40 PM / a month ago

McConnell would prefer confirmed defence secretary given Iran tensions

FILE PHOTO: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell speaks with reporters following the weekly policy luncheons on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 7, 2019. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said on Tuesday it would be better to have a Senate-confirmed defence secretary than someone serving in just an acting capacity given tensions between the United States and Iran.

McConnell made the comment to reporters shortly after Patrick Shanahan, the acting defence secretary, withdrew from consideration to be the permanent defence chief.

Reporting by Amanda Becker; Writing by Makini Brice; Editing by Tim Ahmann

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