A House Republican's effort to better coordinate government-wide efforts to free U.S. hostages held abroad is winning early support from the Pentagon chief.

California congressman Duncan Hunter is introducing a bill Thursday that calls on the president to task one person to lead U.S. efforts to recover American hostages.

The bill comes as Islamic extremists are targeting Americans across the globe and the White House is reviewing how the U.S. responds when citizens are taken hostage.

Defense Secretary Ash Carter said at a House Armed Services Committee hearing Wednesday that hostage rescue is an example of something that's best done with a whole-of-government approach.

Hunter's bill calls for one interagency coordinator who would manage a task force of government agencies best suited to work on each hostage case.