WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA), a combat veteran and member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, issued the following statement on President-elect Trump's intention to nominate retired General James Mattis as the Secretary of Defense:

"General Mattis has led an extraordinary career in the United States Marine Corps, and as the former Commander of U.S. Central Command and coauthor of the Counterinsurgency Field Manual, he is clearly knowledgeable on many of the important issues our country faces today. He has served our country well throughout his more than four decades in the military. As a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, I will thoroughly vet him for this position. He has been a tremendous military leader, and I look forward to ensuring he can accomplish the same in this position."

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