President and CEO of the Center for Security Policy Fred Fleitz is back in the running for Director of National Intelligence (DNI), according to a source.
Fleitz met with President Donald Trump on Monday, according to the source, and the meeting allegedly went “very well.”
Fleitz was also previously under consideration before Trump decided to nominate Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-TX), a member of the House Judiciary Committee and ardent Trump supporter, for the position.
However, Ratcliffe withdrew his name from the running last week after intense media scrutiny, leaving the nomination open again.
Fleitz recently served as a deputy assistant to Trump and chief of staff to National Security Adviser John Bolton. He has held national security positions with the Central Intelligence Agency, the Defense Intelligence Agency, the State Department, and on the staff of the House Intelligence Committee.
Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, executive director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security, wrote in an op-ed in Newsmax on Thursday that Fleitz “is the right man at the right time.”
“He is the obvious choice if only because intelligence community ‘swamp creatures’ are trying desperately to sabotage his nomination with falsehoods and press leaks,” Pry wrote.
“The intelligence swamp doesn’t want Fleitz. They want one of their own as DNI. One of their chief complaints about Fred Fleitz is that he is an ‘ideologue,’ sharing President Trump’s worldview and values! They are right,” he wrote.
“Most importantly, Fleitz is a reformer, who as DNI will work aggressively to root out corruption in the intelligence community (and with the attorney general) to plumb the depths of the conspiracy to prevent President Trump’s re-election, and that is also subverting his administration,” he added.
Other potential candidates include former Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-MI), who previously served as House Intelligence Committee chairman and advised the Trump campaign and co-chaired his campaign in Michigan. He is currently the U.S. Ambassador to the Netherlands.
Rep. Mike McCaul (R-TX) has also been named as a potential candidate in recent reports. He is currently the ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and was previously the chairman of the Homeland Security Committee.
Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA), the vice chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and is a popular figure among conservatives, has also been named as a potential candidate, but a source told Bloomberg that he has advised the president on possible selections but is not under consideration.