Lawmakers are worried that the nation may be fighting a war on two fronts simultaneously without real time decision-making by the administration.
“It is such a sweeping, nebulous threat to our economy and to our national security, I cannot get my head around it,” Rep. Devin Nunes told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota on New Day.
“How do you have the Defense Department go somewhere else to make decisions when they’re trying to figure out how to defend the homeland against a war with a potential adversary somewhere else? I don’t think that’s a logical way to go about planning.
“I think that there has to be, at least, a better pronoun usage, and making sure that every weapon, every piece of technology, every plane, every ship, whether it’s a nuclear missile submarine or this hypersonic weapon or a surface ship — every vessel has to be asked, ‘What can we do with these weapons to defend against this threat?'”
Even before the North Korean’s Kim Jong Un staged a successful missile test Monday, all eyes were on Washington this week. Last month, North Korea conducted its most powerful nuclear test yet.
Nunes, R-California, and Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, have led calls for the State Department to be removed from the White House — a concept that McCain’s opponent, Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Arizona, has supported.
Nunes said a bad decision at State could threaten our national security.
“To me, this is just such a near-term threat. I just want to make sure that — you know, I think that Secretary Tillerson is someone that can reach out to world leaders. He’s been respected around the world. To have our secretary of state, who is someone you certainly have a lot of confidence in, kind of boss him around like that, I don’t think is going to help,” Nunes said.
But Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, said McMaster must give the President to know “what’s on his mind” in real time.
“I think, to be blunt, you’re worried about a decision coming up in June that could kill your family, your wife, your mother, your father. I think your immediate priority is making sure that America is kept secure. So I hope he trusts the President. I don’t know that he trusts the President. I’ve said that a lot. But I hope he trusts the President,” Graham said.
McMaster told CNN on Monday that the President needs to know “who’s at the defense pole of this war with him.”
But members of Congress and experts said that putting the State Department in the White House is not enough.
Former Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz argued in a recent op-ed that should be achieved by taking away “classified and compartmentalized decision-making from the White House.”