Senate committee approves Trump's pick for Army secretary

By RICHARD LARDNER Markets Associated Press

The Senate Armed Services Committee has approved the nomination of Raytheon Vice President Mark Esper to serve as President Donald Trump's Army secretary.

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The committee recommended by voice vote on Tuesday that the full Senate consider Esper's nomination as well as several more of the president's picks for other key Pentagon posts.

They are: Robert Wilkie to be undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness; Joseph Kernan to be undersecretary of defense for intelligence; and Guy Roberts to be assistant secretary of defense for nuclear, chemical and biological defense programs.

Esper has been Raytheon's top lobbyist since 2010. He agreed, if confirmed, to recuse himself from matters related to Raytheon that may come before him.

Esper is Trump's third choice for Army secretary, a post the president struggled to fill.