Secretary of Defense James Mattis, a supporter of Mark Green for the position of Army secretary, appears to have had no idea of Green’s socially conservative views on the LGBT community.
Two Pentagon officials told The Washington Examiner on condition of anonymity that Mattis left the vetting process to the White House, which explains why Mattis was apparently blindsided by Green’s withdrawal Friday after LGBT advocacy groups protested his nomination, The Washington Examiner reports.
These officials further stated that Mattis approved of Green mostly because of his strong military record as a war hero and flight surgeon in the Army.
“He had my full support during the selection process, and he will have my full support during the Senate confirmation process,” Mattis said in April. “I am confident of Mark’s ability to effectively lead the Army.”
After immense pressure from LGBT groups, Green officially withdrew from the nomination process, saying that while the accusations grossly misinterpreted his beliefs, the distractions created by the public campaign would follow him into the service, effectively hampering his ability to lead the Army effectively.
“Tragically, my life of public service and my Christian beliefs have been mischaracterized and attacked by a few on the other side of the aisle for political gain,” Green said in a statement. “While these false attacks have no bearing on the needs of the Army or my qualifications to serve, I believe it is critical to give the President the ability to move forward with his vision to restore our military to its rightful place in the world.”
LGBT groups pointed to comments Green made, such as: “If you poll the psychiatrists, they’re going to tell you that transgender is a disease.”
Green’s withdrawal makes him the second nominee for secretary of the Army to back out of the process after Vincent Viola withdrew in February, citing financial entanglements.
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