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Trump’s army secretary nominee Vincent Viola withdraws as candidate

Adrew Kelly for Reuters

Vincent Viola, an infantry veteran and founder of a high-speed trading firm nominated by Donald Trump to be secretary of the army, has withdrawn his name from consideration.

A Trump administration official confirmed that Viola had withdrawn. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the official wasn’t authorized to speak publicly.

A Pentagon statement on Friday night said defence secretary James Mattis was “disappointed but understands and respects” Viola’s decision, adding that it would make another recommendation soon.

The Military Times, which first reported the news, cited Viola’s inability to get around defense department rules concerning his family businesses as the reason for withdrawing his name.

Viola is a former chairman of the New York Mercantile Exchange and a leader in electronic trading. Along with Virtu chief executive Douglas Cifu, he bought the Florida Panthers of the National Hockey League in 2013.

A 1977 West Point graduate, Viola trained as an airborne ranger infantry officer and served in the 101st Airborne Division. In 2003, he founded and helped fund the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point.

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Source: The Guardian

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