President-elect Joe Biden is warning of massive damage done to the national security apparatus by the Trump administration and “roadblocks” in communication between agency officials and his transition team that could undermine Americans’ security.
During remarks Monday in Wilmington, Delaware, Biden said his team has faced “obstruction” from the “political leadership” at the Defense Department and the Office of Management and Budget as they’ve sought to gather the necessary information to continue the transition of power.
Biden’s remarks came after he was briefed by members of his national security and defense teams and advisers, including his nominees for secretary of State, Defense, and Homeland Security, as well as his incoming national security adviser. The president-elect said his team found that agencies “critical to our security have incurred enormous damage” during Trump’s time in office.
“Many of them have been hollowed out in personnel, capacity, and in morale. … It makes it harder for our government to protect the American people,” he said. Biden said that his transition team needs “full visibility” into the budget process at the Defense Department “in order to avoid any window of confusion or catch-up that our adversaries may try to exploit.”
Joe Biden today described "roadblocks" to communication from leaders at DOD & OMB and said "We need full visibility into the budget planning underway at DoD & other agencies in order to avoid any window of confusion or catch-up that our adversaries may try to exploit."
— Alexandra Jaffe (@ajjaffe) December 28, 2020
Watch the President-elect’s remarks, below.