The White House has chosen a former top aide to President Donald Trump’s transition team to lead the newly created National Security Council, as the Trump administration ramps up its efforts to prepare for a potential foreign crisis.
The appointment of Matthew Miller, a former deputy assistant to former President Joe Biden, as national security advisor marks a significant shift for the transition team, which was rocked by controversy during the election and has yet to nominate a senior adviser.
Miller’s hiring comes as Trump seeks to rebuild his team, with Vice President Mike Pence stepping in as Trump’s new national security policy chief, and Vice President Joe Lockhart, a member of Trump’s campaign team, filling the role of acting national security director.
Miller has a reputation for being a tough-minded public servant, and his nomination could be seen as an indication of his commitment to rebuilding the transition effort.
He is known for pushing for more stringent vetting procedures for potential hires and for working to get a special prosecutor into the Russia investigation.
Miller has also worked closely with Pence, having served as the vice president’s top communications adviser for the 2016 presidential election and is close with Trump on policy issues, including the North American Free Trade Agreement.
Miller was the lead public affairs adviser to Biden in 2016 and was one of the architects of the Biden administration’s effort to address the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, the group that the United States has targeted with airstrikes and targeted in Syria and Iraq.
During Biden’s tenure, Miller was the deputy assistant secretary of defense for international security affairs.
He was also the deputy chief of staff for national security and public affairs during the 2016 election.
Miller, 39, has extensive experience in national security affairs, having previously worked as deputy assistant national security advisers to Biden and as deputy director of the U.S. Military Assistance Command.
Miller previously worked in the private sector as a legislative analyst for the House and Senate Armed Services Committees.
He joined the Biden team in late 2016 and served as Biden’s chief of communications for the presidential campaign.