The US Senate has confirmed Republican congressman John McHugh for the position of United States Secretary of the Army.

The 60-year-old New York lawmaker was nominated to the position in early June 2009 by President Barack Obama.

McHugh is expected to improve Pakistan’s counterinsurgency efforts by joining the administration’s military team as Obama considers whether or not to send more US forces to Afghanistan.

McHugh as the senior Republican on the House of Representatives Armed Services Committee had been critical of some Obama policies, including proposals to cut the Pentagon budget.

He will join the top ranks of President Obama’s Democratic administration that includes Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.

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