President Obama has nominated four experienced, capable individuals to serve on his national security team and I strongly support his choices. Secretary Bob Gates has led the Department of Defense with distinction, and we will miss his leadership, courage and professionalism. I am confident that Leon Panetta will do an excellent job as his successor. I have known and worked with Leon for over 30 years in a number of capacities. During his service in Congress, as Director of the Office of Management and Budget, as the White House Chief of Staff, and as CIA Director, Leon has served our nation proudly, and I know that he will work tirelessly to strengthen our national security and support our troops.