Rep. John Ratcliffe nominated by President Trump - KTEN.com - Texoma news, weather and sports

Rep. John Ratcliffe nominated by President Trump

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Congressman Ratcliffe nominated for the position of Director of National Intelligence by President Trump Congressman Ratcliffe nominated for the position of Director of National Intelligence by President Trump

WASHINGTON -- President Trump announced Sunday that he is nominating Texas Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-4th District) to replace Dan Coats as Director of National Intelligence.

Coats is leaving his job next month, ending a two-year tenure marked by clashes with the president.
    
Trump tweeted Sunday that the nation's top intelligence official would step aside on August 15. 

Ratcliffe -- whose district includes Sherman, Denison, Bonham, Paris and much of northeast Texas -- is a frequent Trump defender who questioned special counsel Robert Mueller last week during a House Judiciary Committee hearing. He issued a written statement following the president's nomination:

I am deeply grateful to President Trump for the opportunity to lead our Nation’s intelligence community and work on behalf of all the public servants who are tirelessly devoted to defending the security and safety of the United States. President Trump’s call to serve in this role was not one I could ignore, and I am incredibly thankful to him for this great honor. I look forward to my new role with energy and focus.

It has been the privilege of my lifetime to be the voice for the people of the Fourth District of Texas over the past five years. I will take their wisdom and common sense with me in my new role, and I will always remember with pride my service to them, and all that we have accomplished together.

Dan Coats frequently appeared to be out of step with Trump, and disclosed to prosecutors how he was urged by the president to publicly deny any link between Russia and the Trump campaign. The frayed relationship reflected broader divisions between the president and the government's intelligence agencies.

Coats, 76, served in Congress from 1981 to 1999 as a member of the House and in the Senate. He served as ambassador to Germany from 2001 to 2005 and returned to the Senate in 2011. He decided not to seek re-election and retired from Congress in January 2017.

In a tweet, Trump praised Ratcliffe: "A former U.S. Attorney, John will lead and inspire greatness for the Country he loves."

Ratcliffe -- the former U.S. Attorney and mayor of Heath, Texas -- appeared Sunday on Fox News Channel's "Sunday Morning Futures" and made a number of points that were in sync with Trump's rhetoric. He said it was time to move on from talk of impeachment, questioned the legitimacy of the Mueller report into Russian election interference and urged investigation into potential wrongdoing during the Obama administration.

Ratcliffe's congressional district includes Sherman, Texarkana and Rockwall.

The nomination will now have to go to the U.S. Senate for final approval.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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