(1)There is a Commandant of the Marine Corps, appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate. The Commandant shall be appointed for a term of four years from the general officers of the Marine Corps. He serves at the pleasure of the President. In time of war or during a national emergency declared by Congress, he may be reappointed for a term of not more than four years.
(2)The President may appoint an officer as Commandant of the Marine Corps only if—
(A)the officer has had significant experience in joint duty assignments; and
(B)such experience includes at least one full tour of duty in a joint duty assignment (as defined in section
664(f) of this title) as a general officer.
(3)The President may waive paragraph (2) in the case of an officer if the President determines such action is necessary in the national interest.
(b)The Commandant of the Marine Corps, while so serving, has the grade of general without vacating his permanent grade.
(d)Except as otherwise prescribed by law and subject to section
5013(f) of this title, the Commandant performs his duties under the authority, direction, and control of the Secretary of the Navy and is directly responsible to the Secretary.
(e)Subject to the authority, direction, and control of the Secretary of the Navy, the Commandant shall—
(1)preside over the Headquarters, Marine Corps;
(2)transmit the plans and recommendations of the Headquarters, Marine Corps, to the Secretary and advise the Secretary with regard to such plans and recommendations;
(3)after approval of the plans or recommendations of the Headquarters, Marine Corps, by the Secretary, act as the agent of the Secretary in carrying them into effect;
(4)exercise supervision, consistent with the authority assigned to commanders of unified or specified combatant commands under chapter
6 of this title, over such of the members and organizations of the Marine Corps and the Navy as the Secretary determines;
(5)perform the duties prescribed for him by section
171 of this title and other provisions of law; and
(6)perform such other military duties, not otherwise assigned by law, as are assigned to him by the President, the Secretary of Defense, or the Secretary of the Navy.
(1)The Commandant shall also perform the duties prescribed for him as a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under section
151 of this title.
(2)To the extent that such action does not impair the independence of the Commandant in the performance of his duties as a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Commandant shall inform the Secretary regarding military advice rendered by members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on matters affecting the Department of the Navy.
(3)Subject to the authority, direction, and control of the Secretary of Defense, the Commandant shall keep the Secretary of the Navy fully informed of significant military operations affecting the duties and responsibilities of the Secretary.
Provisions similar to those in this section were contained in section
5201 of this title prior to enactment of Pub. L. 99–433.
2003—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 108–136substituted “from the general officers of the Marine Corps” for “from officers on the active-duty list of the Marine Corps not below the grade of colonel”.
1996—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 104–106struck out subsec. (c) which read as follows: “An officer who is retired while serving as Commandant of the Marine Corps, or who, after serving at least two and one-half years as Commandant, is retired after completion of that service while serving in a lower grade than general, may, in the discretion of the President and by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, be retired with the grade of general.”
1991—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 102–190inserted “and by and with the advice and consent of the Senate” after “President”.
1988—Subsec. (a)(2)(B). Pub. L. 100–456substituted “full tour of duty in a joint duty assignment (as defined in section
664(f) of this title)” for “joint duty assignment”.
Waiver of Qualifications for Appointment as Service Chief
For provisions giving President temporary authority to waive requirements in subsec. (a)(2) of this section, see section 532(c) ofPub. L. 99–433, formerly set out as a note under section
3033 of this title.
The table below lists the classification updates, since Jan. 3, 2012, for this section. Updates to a broader range of sections may be found at the update page for containing chapter, title, etc.
The most recent Classification Table update that we have noticed was Tuesday, August 13, 2013
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