The Senate on Friday confirmed Mike McCord as undersecretary of defense, or comptroller, at the Department of Defense.
It represents a return to the post for the senior government official, who was confirmed by unanimous consent, and has previously held the role between 2009 and 2014, and between 2014 and 2017.
The comptroller is a high-level civilian position within the DOD, which is appointed by the U.S. president. The comptroller advises the secretary of defense and the deputy secretary of defense on budgetary and fiscal matters.
McCord supported defense budget growth between 3-5% under President Trump, and also defended President Biden’s plan to divert those resources during his confirmation hearing on May 11.
Biden’s proposed $171.3 billion budget for civilian research and development (R&D) prioritizes emerging technologies like quantum computing and artificial intelligence at the expense of outdated, legacy systems.
McCord’s expected nomination, along with two others, earned praise from Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin in early April.
“Each of these individuals is talented, experienced and highly qualified for the critical national security roles they will, if confirmed, undertake on behalf of the department.”
“Their deep experience in national security will prove essential in guiding our efforts to defend this nation and secure our interests around the world,” Austin said at the time.
During his confirmation hearing, McCord emphasized the importance of DOD’s audit for identifying waste in an “era of cyber intrusions,” and said he would look to speed up the process.
Before returning to government, following his departure in 2017, McCord was director of civil military programs at the Stennis Center for Public Service.