Navy secretary nominee withdraws from consideration
Philip Bilden, President Donald Trump's choice to serve as secretary of the Navy, withdrew his nomination Sunday, citing an inability to divest from his financial investments.
"After an extensive review process, I have determined that I will not be able to satisfy the Office of Government Ethics requirements without undue disruption and materially adverse divestment of my family's private financial interests," Bilden said in a statement, according to ABC.
Last week, Major Garrett at CBS reported that Bilden — a private equity firm investor — was "likely to withdraw" his nomination.
White House press secretary Sean Spicer denied Garrett's report, saying Bilden was "100% committed to being the next SECNAV pending Senate confirm."
Spicer — who has attacked the media for publishing so-called "fake news" — immediately took heat for his incorrect pushback.
Bilden is now the second military secretary nominee to withdraw his nomination.
Vincent Viola, Trump's pick for secretary of the Army, withdrew his nomination earlier this month for similar reasons. Viola, a billionaire and owner of the Florida Panthers hockey team, said he was unable to remove himself from his business ties.