The White House on Tuesday said it was tapping its current “WMD czar” for a job at the Energy Department overseeing nuclear weapon programs.
The Senate has to approve the nomination of Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall to become the deputy secretary of the Energy Department, the New York Times reports. She is intended to replace Daniel Poneman as the department’s second-ranking official.
If approved for the job, Sherwood-Randall’s portfolio will include managing key National Nuclear Security Administration programs to update aging fissile material-production capabilities and to refurbish old atomic arms.
Since 2013, she has worked at the White House as the coordinator for defense policy, countering weapons of mass destruction, and arms control. No replacement has yet been named for Sherwood-Randall on the National Security Council.
Meanwhile, the National Nuclear Security Administration announced it had selected senior defense programs official Tim Driscoll to fill a newly created position of uranium program manager, the Knoxville News Sentinel reported.
Driscoll’s appointment is understood to follow a recommendation from an independent “red team” on options for overhauling uranium-processing facilities at the Y-12 National Security Complex in Tennessee.
In his new role, Driscoll will be “responsible for overseeing all program elements for maintaining NNSA’s uranium manufacturing capabilities in support of mission requirements,” says an announcement from NNSA Administrator Frank Klotz.
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"President Donald Trump is leaning toward nominating Alex Azar, a former pharmaceutical industry executive and George W. Bush administration official, to serve as Health and Human Services secretary, according to two White House officials...Azar is a veteran of HHS. He served as the department’s general counsel and deputy secretary during the Bush administration." He led Eli Lilly's U.S. operations from 2012-17.
"Sen. Lamar Alexander says he and Sen. Patty Murray have reached a deal to fund the Affordable Care Act's cost-sharing subsidies in exchange for giving states more regulatory flexibility with the law." Axios is watching to see if the deal will gather support.