Biden Says He Will Reveal Defense Secretary Pick on Friday

President-Elect Joe Biden said Monday that he would reveal his pick for secretary of Defense by Friday, and his aides said other cabinet nominations would also come by the end of the week.

Biden spoke to reporters briefly in Wilmington, Delaware, and was asked about his timing to announce his selections to lead the Pentagon and Justice Department.

“Defense is Friday,” he responded, without specifying a timeline for attorney general.

His office later issued a statement saying the announcement for defense as well as members of the economic and domestic cabinet would take place before the end of this week.

Biden has already announced his choices for secretaries of state, Treasury and health and human services, among other top government jobs.

Defense and attorney general are among the four most senior posts, along with Treasury and state.

Biden is committed to a diverse cabinet and under pressure to name an African American to one of the top four cabinet posts. Among the candidates Biden is considering for Defense secretary is retired General Lloyd Austin and former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, both African American. He had also been considering picking former defense official Michele Flournoy, who would be the first woman in the job.

Representative Jim Clyburn of South Carolina, a prominent Black lawmaker who had criticized Biden for failing to name African Americans to top positions, said Monday that he was “encouraged” by recent discussions with the president-elect.

“I think we’ll see several other people of color announced this week and next,” Clyburn said on CNN.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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