A senior US official said that at the Pentagon, Mr Miller was angry that the agency’s leadership had slowed down Mr Ellis’ installments for months, despite undergoing the standard appointment process and being elected to the position Was. So Mr. Miller ordered the agency to administer the oath to Mr. Ellis, a move the Washington Post reported on Saturday.
Mr. Ellis is seen as a smart lawyer. But the push to position him in a permanent government job surprised some. According to former officials, he is likely to enter the general counsel’s office under a good deal of suspicion and will have a tough fight to win the trust of General Nakasone.
Mr. Ellis will be a member of the Senior Executive Service, a civil service job that has strong defenses against firing. However, civil servants can easily be transferred to the Department of Defense, so they may be given a legal job elsewhere in an expanded military department – for example, complying with environmental regulations at remote military bases.
While he was on the Intelligence Committee, Mr. Ellis was Representative Devin Nunes, a trusted advisor to the Republic of California. Mr. Ellis played various roles in the Trump administration, including serving as an advocate for the National Security Council and then senior director of the White House for Intelligence.
In the White House, Mr. Ellis rescinded a decision by a career official to approve Mr. Bolton’s book for publication, even though he had no formal training in the classification of national security information. Under the pressure of President Trump, the Justice Department sued Mr. Bolton for his benefit from the book.
A judge overseeing the case delivered a ruling on Thursday, making it highly likely that Mr. Bolton’s attorney, Charles J. Cooper may question White House officials such as Mr. Ellis whether the classification decisions were made in bad faith. Should Mr. Ellis take over as general counsel, he can withhold that testimony, at least for a time.
Early in Mr. Trump’s term, Mr. Ellis provided Mr. Nunes’ intelligence report that Mr. Trump’s allies had been swept under foreign surveillance by American intelligence agencies. The content is at the heart of Mr. Trump’s persistent accusations that the Obama administration spied on his campaign.