- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 11, 2017

WASHINGTON (AP) - Independent Sen. Angus King of Maine is among those who support amending the law to allow retired Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis to serve as defense secretary under President-elect Donald Trump.

King said he supports a one-time exception to current law that requires a former member of the military to be out of active duty service for at least seven years to serve as defense secretary. The 1947 law aimed to preserve civilian control over the military.

King said he decided to support the amendment because it’s written in such a way that it can’t be used by an appointment by any future president.

Such an exception has happened only once before. The law was waived for George Marshall in 1950, a former five-star Army general and secretary of state.


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