John McCain appeared on State of the Union on Sunday where he confirmed that Chuck Hagel will likely be confirmed as Secretary of Defense within the week.
According to McCain:
“I don’t believe Chuck Hagel, who is a friend of mine, is qualified to be secretary of defense. But I do believe that elections have consequences, unfortunately, and the president of the United States was re-elected.”
Senate members will vote again on Tuesday to determine if the Republican filibuster of Hagel’s nomination should come to an end. Two weeks prior, the nomination fell 60 votes short to end the debate.
After the Republican party managed to filibuster Obama’s nomination, he took to Google+ Hangouts to discuss the situation:
“What seems to be happening — and this has been growing over time — is that the Republican minority in the Senate seems to think that the rule now is that you have to have 60 votes for everything. Well, that’s not the rule. The rule is that you’re supposed to have a majority of the hundred senators vote on most bills.”
Hagel will likely be confirmed but receive only a handful GOP votes.
According to John McCain:
“I believe that when the questions are answered, and I believe they will be this week, that the president deserves an up or down vote.”
McCain isn’t the only person worried about Chuck Hagel’s nomination. Last week, 15 GOP members sent a letter to President Obama begging him to withdraw Hagel from consideration.
Chuck Hagel had previously aligned himself with the Republican party, serving as a GOP senator for Nebraska.
Attacking Hagel over his nomination shouldn’t come as a surprise. Despite his GOP classification in Nebraska, Chuck Hagel quickly realigned his political support. Hagel sparred with George W. Bush over the war in Iraq, avoided support for Senator John McCain during the 2008 presidential elections, and eventually endorsed Democrat Senator Bob Kerrey in last year’s Nebraska Senate race.
Hagel, 66, currently serves as an intelligence adviser for the White House. Upon his confirmation, Hagel will replace the eager to retire Leon Panetta.
McCain also attacked President Obama’s nomination of John Brennan for CIA director. According to McCain:
“Mr. Brennan said he was opposed to waterboarding and torture, but at the same time he has said it has saved lives. I would like to know what lives were saved because the information I have is it saved no one’s life. In fact, it was a lot of misinformation.”
Going on the offensive against McCain’s attack of Brennan was Senator Claire McCaskill of Missouri. McCaskill told Fox News:
“The president wants him in the room as he’s making important decisions. There’s no question about his integrity of character. I think the president deserves to have the Cabinet he wants as long as the person is qualified.”
“He’s qualified, and I think it’s despicable how his character has been impugned by some people through innuendo and inference.”
Here is John McCain on State of the Union:
Do you think Chuck Hagel will be confirmed in the next week?