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Christopher C. Miller, the acting defense secretary, gave Gen. Paul M. The deadline came and went with the National Security Agency remaining silent. Ellis accepted his final job offer yesterday afternoon. Ellis has been accused of having a hand in one of the more contentious legal decisions the Trump administration made: the attempt to stop John R. Boltonthe former national security adviser, from publishing a damning book about the president.

Biden Jr. While it will be difficult to fire Mr. Ellis under Civil Service rules, the Biden administration could easily reas him to another, less important post. He was one of three Looking nsa this morning, although he did not receive the highest score from the panel evaluating the candidates, according to people familiar with the hiring process. Nevertheless, White House officials told the Defense Department general counsel that the administration favored Mr.

Ellis for the job. Positioning a political appointee in a Civil Service job is a complex procedure requiring various approvals to prevent favoritism in the hiring process. With Mr. Ellis, the Office of Personnel Management eventually determined that the general counsel position was exempt from a policy requiring special approval, though those deliberations slowed the process.

Ellis also had to seek a new security clearance.

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Although General Nakasone was not pleased that Mr. Ellis was chosen over career officials at the National Security Agency, he did not actively block or slow the process of installing Mr. Ellis, according to two people familiar with the matter. He did, however, insist that all procedures were followed and all approvals were put in writing. At the Pentagon, Mr.

So Mr. Miller ordered the agency to swear Mr. Ellis in, a move The Washington Post reported on Saturday. In a statement, the Pentagon defended Mr. Ellis is seen as a smart lawyer. But the push to install him in a permanent government job puzzled some. Ellis will be a member of the Senior Executive Service, a Civil Service job that has strong protections against firing.

However, civil servants can be easily moved in the Defense Department, so he could be given a legal job elsewhere in the sprawling department — overseeing compliance with environmental regulations at a remote military base, for example. When he was on the Intelligence Committee, Mr. At the White House, Mr. Ellis overruled the decision by a career official to clear Mr. Bolton to recoup his profits from the book. A judge overseeing the case issued a ruling on Thursday that makes it highly likely that Mr.

Cooper, can question White House officials like Mr. Ellis about whether the classification decisions were Looking nsa this morning in bad faith. Should Mr. Ellis take over as general counsel, at least for a time, he may be able to stall that testimony.

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Ellis is also being investigated by the Defense Department inspector general examining accusations that he retaliated against Yevgeny Vindman, who goes by Eugene and worked with Mr. Ellis as a lawyer for the National Security Council. Vindman is the twin brother of Alexander S. Vindman, the former Army lieutenant colonel who testified against Mr. Trump in his first impeachment trial. Early in Mr. Ellis provided Mr. Nunes intelligence reports that associates of Mr. Trump were swept up in foreign surveillance by American intelligence agencies. The material is at the heart of Mr. Allies of Mr. Trump have pushed to declassify documents that some conservatives believe would buttress those claims, including last-minute pressure in recent days.

But in reality, Mr. It is not clear precisely what led the Pentagon to push General Nakasone to speed Mr. However, Mr. Trump met with Mr. Miller on Friday to discuss various issues, according to the senior U. Politics N. The Biden transition team declined to comment.

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Eric Schmitt and Michael Crowley contributed reporting.

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