WASHINGTON — After languishing more than a year in political purgatory, the name of Jo Ann Rooney has been quietly withdrawn to become under secretary of the U.S. Navy.

The announcement was made late Wednesday by the White House. Included among a list of 17 presidential nominees for various positions were two withdrawals, one of them Rooney's.

The move brings to a close a strange saga that began with her nomination on Sept. 11, 2013, for the Navy's number two position, previously held by Bob Work, who resigned in March 2013.

Rooney's Senate confirmation hearing on Oct. 10 of last year went poorly, particularly under questioning from senators John McCain, R-Arizona, and Kirsten Gillibrand, D-New York.

McCain – expected to become chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee when the Republican majority is seated in January – dismissively told Rooney, "I will not be supporting your nomination" after the nominee was unable to answer a question about the Navy's ability to perform a financial audit.

Gillibrand placed a hold on the nomination, but withdrew it after a few months, and the nomination was sent to the full Senate on Jan. 9. There it was effectively pigeonholed, and was never brought to the floor for a vote.

Christopher P. Cavas was the naval warfare reporter for Defense News.

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