Government , Industry Specific

Senate Confirms Biden's Pick to Lead NSA and CYBERCOM

Senate Approves Pentagon Nominees After Republican Lawmaker Drops 10-Month Blockade
Senate Confirms Biden's Pick to Lead NSA and CYBERCOM
The Senate on Dec. 19, 2023, confirmed Air Force Lt. Gen. Timothy Haugh to serve as head of NSA and Cyber Command. (Image: Shutterstock)

The U.S. Senate unanimously confirmed President Joe Biden's pick to lead the National Security Agency and Cyber Command after a Republican lawmaker dropped his monthslong blockade against military promotions over a Pentagon abortion policy.

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Air Force Lt. Gen. Timothy Haugh will lead both organizations, replacing Army Gen. Paul Nakasone, who has been in place since 2018. Haugh previously served as deputy commander of CYBERCOM and oversaw the Air Force's digital and information warfare division.

The Senate has been working to approve a backlog of military promotions caused by a blanket hold that Sen. Tommy Tuberville, R-Ala., enacted in February. Tuberville blocked more than 400 military nominees for nearly 10 months in protest over the Pentagon policy allowing service members to seek paid leave and travel reimbursements when in need of an abortion.

"We didn't get as much out of it as we wanted," Tuberville said about his protest after lifting the blockade in December amid growing bipartisan opposition.

Haugh, who was confirmed in a voice vote late Tuesday night, has served as deputy commander of Cyber Command since August 2022. He has held a number of intelligence and cyber command positions, according to his Air Force bio, including serving as commander of the Cyber National Mission Force and director of intelligence for CYBERCOM.

Sen. Ron Wyden. D-Ore., also dropped a separate pledge to block Haugh's nomination to lead the NSA over the Department of Defense's failure to publicly disclose whether it had purchased location data and web-browsing information from data brokers on American citizens. The senator has been requesting information from DOD about its relationships with data brokers since January 2021, including whether the department had been purchasing location data on Americans (see: Democrat Blocks Biden's NSA Nominee Over Data Controversy).

About the Author

Chris Riotta

Chris Riotta

Managing Editor, GovInfoSecurity

Riotta is a journalist based in Washington, D.C. He earned his master's degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, where he served as 2021 class president. His reporting has appeared in NBC News, Nextgov/FCW, Newsweek Magazine, The Independent and more.

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