CNN is reporting that President Obama will nominate former Pentagon official Ashton Carter as U.S. Secretary of Defense.
A Pentagon spokesman said he was unaware of a decision and referred reporters to the White House, which had no immediate comment on the report. A spokeswoman for Carter also had no immediate comment.
A string of potential nominees have all turned down the position, the latest being Jeh Johnson, head of the Department of Homeland Security.
Carter was the No. 2 official at the Pentagon from October 2011 to December 2013. Previously, he was the Pentagon’s chief arms buyer.
He also served as assistant secretary of defense for international security policy under President Bill Clinton.
Carter has bachelor’s degrees in physics and medieval history from Yale, a doctorate in theoretical physics from Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes scholar, according to the Pentagon website.
Hagel resigned from his position last week, after pressure from the Obama administration.