To this point, President Trump had been happy with the job Patrick Shanahan was doing as his acting Secretary of Defense.
Shanahan’s nomination, however, has now been withdrawn due to some rather disturbing incidents uncovered during his FBI background check.
Significant Domestic Violence History
For some reason, during the initial vetting process, all of the facts of two domestic violence incidents in Shanahan’s past were not brought to light.
Some details of these events were first made public as far back as 2010, but the new details revealed were enough for Shanahan to withdraw from nomination consideration and how his political career is over.
To be clear, from what we have seen, Shanahan himself never hit or abused anyone.
The same, however, cannot be said for his wife and son.
Shanahan spoke in detail with the Washington Post about the incidents, and stated, “Bad things can happen to good families … and this is a tragedy, really.”
He further stated that this information being released publicly “will ruin my son’s life.”
There are two major incidents that have created the problems for Shanahan.
The first being when his then-wife was arrested for punching Shanahan in the face.
The second involved his son attacking his wife with a baseball bat and the actions taken by Shannan afterward.
Shanahan defended his son vehemently after the incident and made some notes in his defense that were never meant to be seen by anyone other than his son’s attorneys.
According to the police report, this is the statement given by his wife Kimberly:
William [Shanahan’s son] “shoved and pinned his mother against a bathroom wall,” then used a Nike composite baseball bat “to swing at her head.”
Kimberly further stated, “I attempted to run away from Will, but as I reached the laundry room, he struck me with the bat in the back of my head.
“The last thing I remember from before I lost consciousness is the impact of the bat, and blood gushing everywhere.”
Shanahan, in an effort to defend his son, considered using the tack of self-defense.
He constructed some notes for his son’s attorney, writing, “Use of a baseball bat in self-defense will likely be viewed as an imbalance of force.
“However, Will’s mother harassed him for nearly three hours before the incident.”
Defending the document, Shanahan stated, “That document literally was, I sat down with [my son] right away, and being an engineer at an aerospace company, you wrote down what are all of the mitigating reasons something could have happened.
“You know, just what’s the list of things that could have happened?”
However, he further stated, “Quite frankly, it’s difficult to relive that moment and the passage was difficult for me to read.
“I was wrong to write those three sentences.
“I have never believed Will’s attack on his mother was an act of self-defense or justified.
“I don’t believe violence is appropriate, ever, and certainly never any justification for attacking someone with a baseball bat.”
As news of the story was breaking, President Trump announced that Shanahan had withdrawn to spend more time with his family, and rightfully so.
You can read the full report on the Washington Post.
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