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US homeland security nominee withdraws name
Updated: 2004-12-11 13:45

Former New York police commissioner Bernard Kerik, named by US President George W. Bush as homeland security secretary, has withdrawn his name from consideration, the White House announced Friday.

US President George W. Bush (L), with Former New York City Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik (R). Commissioner Kerik withdrew his name for personal reasons from consideration for Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security late Friday. [AP]

Kerik informed the White House Friday evening of his decision to withdraw his name from consideration "for personal reasons," White House spokesman Scott McClellan said in a statement. "The president respects his decision."

Bush nominated Kerik, 49, last week to head the huge Departmentof Homeland Security (DHS). But reports about Kerik's close ties with a stun gun manufacturer, which sold weapons to the DHS, quickly emerged and the possibility of conflict of interest was raised.

Records filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission show Kerik had earned more than 6.2 million dollars in pretax profits through stock options he was granted by Taser International, a manufacturer of stun guns.

Kerik sold most of the stocks last month and the White House has said the former police commissioner would resign from Taser's board and sell his remaining stock if confirmed by the Senate.

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