January 18, 2021

General education: What Austin can learn from Mattis’s rocky relationship with Congress

Featuring ​Jim Golby

Source: Defense News

Journalist Joe Gould

The Warrior Monk was having a bad meeting.

At the Capitol in the fall of 2017, Sen. John McCain was fuming to then-Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. Unless Mattis turned over the Trump administration’s tardy Afghanistan strategy and testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee, McCain felt he couldn’t do his job.

But when Mattis, who had been crisscrossing the globe to meet allies, tried to explain his lack of responsiveness ― “Sir, there just aren’t enough hours in the...” ― McCain hit the roof. The chairman had already mentioned his subpoena power to Mattis and now he was telling the retired Marine Corps general he had a constitutional responsibility to testify, according to a 2019 book from Mattis aide Guy Snodgrass.

Read the full story and more from Defense News.


  • ​Jim Golby

    Adjunct Senior Fellow, Military, Veterans, and Society Program, Clements Center for National Security, The University of Texas at Austin

    Jim Golby is a Senior Fellow at the Clements Center for National Security at The University of Texas at Austin and a Lecturer in the Department of Government. Jim is also the ...