“The Department of Defense will continue to provide all required support to the Agency Review Team (ART) to keep our nation and her citizens safe,” Miller said, noting that the Pentagon has already supported 139 interview sessions with more than 200 DoD personnel and disclosed thousands of pages of documents. “Again, I remain committed to a full and transparent transition — this is what our nation expects and the DoD will deliver AS IT ALWAYS HAS.”
The meetings planned for Friday were postponed due to “rapidly changing priorities here,” said a defense official, citing the FDA’s approval of a second coronavirus vaccine, a possible government shutdown, and a massive hack of U.S. government agencies.
The meetings will resume after “the mutually-agreed upon holiday pause,” Miller said in the statement, noting that the Pentagon continues to support the transition with reading materials, reporting requirements, and other activities.
A spokesperson for the Biden transition team declined to comment.
Miller is scheduled to meet with President Donald Trump in the Oval Office Friday afternoon, according to the White House.
Meetings between DoD officials and the transition team got off to a late start on Nov. 24, due to a delay in approval by the General Services Administration, which must greenlight cooperation. The approval came 16 days after Biden was declared the winner of the presidential election.
This marks the second time in less than three weeks that the Pentagon has addressed reports that defense officials have blocked requests from the Biden team to meet with department leaders.
Meetings with the defense intelligence agencies were delayed this month after members of the Biden team improperly reached out directly to the agencies instead of the DoD transition team, and was told that they instead needed to submit requests to the Pentagon, defense officials said at the time.