Defense Secretary Nominee Chuck Hagel Attacked by Super PAC as Anti-Woman, Anti-Gay & Anti-Israel

, U.S. Senator from Nebraska.

Defense Secretary Nominee Chuck Hagel Attacked by Super PAC as Anti-Woman, Anti-Gay & Anti-Israel. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Here we go, the right is pulling a Susan Rice on Chuck Hagel and will stop at nothing to defeat his nomination for Defense Secretary. The reality is that won’t work. He will be confirmed. It’s amazing that the Republicans are willing to turn on one of their own, someone who was held in such high esteem. It’s interesting to see that now Democrats are going after Chuck Hagel.

The New York Times:  “A brand new conservative group calling itself Americans for a Strong Defense and financed by anonymous donors is running advertisements urging Democratic senators in five states to vote against Chuck Hagel, President Obama’s nominee to be secretary of defense.”

“Another freshly minted and anonymously backed organization, Use Your Mandate, which presents itself as a liberal gay rights group but purchases its television time through a prominent Republican firm, is attacking Mr. Hagel as ‘anti-Gay,’ ‘anti-woman’ and ‘anti-Israel’ in ads and mailers.”

“Those groups are joining at least five others that are organizing to stop Mr. Hagel’s confirmation, a goal even they acknowledge appears to be increasingly challenging. But the effort comes with a built-in consolation prize should it fail: depleting some of Mr. Obama’s political capital as he embarks on a new term with fresh momentum.”


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President Obama Putting Republicans on Blast with “In Your Face” Second Term

Barack Obama - Chess Master

President Obama Putting Republicans on Blast with “In Your Face” Second Term (Photo credit: DonkeyHotey)

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is right, President Obama stuck it to Republicans with his nomination of Chuck Hagel as the next Defense Secretary. Right in the eyes. You see, Chuck Hagel was a staunch critic of the George W. Bush foreign policy, specifically on the war in Iraq, so, this should be a win-win for President Obama as there is a real possibility it will resurrect the Bush years. The same years the Republicans gave him a blank check to do whatever he wanted.

Frank Wilkinson says the nomination of former Sen. Chuck Hagel as defense secretary “represents both an affront to Republicans, who have never honestly reckoned with the disasters of George W. Bush’s foreign policy, and to Democrats, who have spent decades crafting foreign policy designed in part to avoid inciting aggression not from abroad, but from Republicans.”

“Obama may or may not believe Hagel is the best person for the job. But he certainly is mindful of the challenge he has just laid down. Unless opponents can restrict the debate on Hagel to his views — real or imagined — on Israel, they risk litigating the disastrous policies that Hagel rejected and his most vociferous critics embraced.”

“An oddly similar battle awaits on the debt ceiling. Obama says that, unlike 2011, he will not negotiate on the debt ceiling. To hold that line, he will have to explain — repeatedly — that spending is initiated in the House and passed by Congress. In other words, the battle presents an opportunity to stick Republicans with their share of blame for the deficit, a reckoning they have evaded as assiduously as the one on Iraq and Afghanistan.”

Hey Sarah Palin, remember when your cojones comment about President Obama, um, I think you are about to see them in his second term.

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Right Wing Outrage Over Chuck Hagel Nomination for Defense Secretary Overblown

Chuck Hagel - Caricature

Right Wing Outrage Over Chuck Hagel Nomination for Defense Secretary Overblown (Photo credit: DonkeyHotey)

CHUCK HAGEL NOMINATION:  Now that President Obama has “picked a fight with the Republicans” and some Democrats, I might add, by nominating Chuck Hagel as his pick for Defense Secretary, it’s about to get ugly. The critics are going to pull a Susan Rice on Chuck Hagel, who has ticked off the gay community, pro-Israel groups and some lawmakers who were upset over his position on Iran and a number of other issues. During an interview with the Lincoln Journal Star, Chuck Hagel said an accurate assessment of his record will demonstrate “unequivocal, total support for Israel” and endorsement of tough international economic sanctions against Iran. He also said the negative assessment of his record by his critics have taken on a “life of its own.” The reality is that if you don’t ascribe to the view that the one way to help Israel is a strike on Iran, you shouldn’t be type-cast as anti-Israel.

The right wing tag-team of Sen. John McCain and Mitch McConnell are slamming Chuck Hagel now. Um, laughable considering John McCain praised him in 2006 saying “I’d be honored to have Chuck with me in any capacity….he’d make a great Secretary of State. Then there’s Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell who praised Hagel in 2007, as “one of the premier foreign policy voices….” In 2008, he also praised Hagel as a “leading voice in foreign affairs.” John McCain is just a bitter man, who is still chewing on sour grapes over the shellacking he took from then-Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama. Unless something has changed, President Obama can pick his own team, unless a candidate has done something egregious.

The Emergency Committee for Israel sent out the following press release, even reserving the domain,

The Emergency Committee for Israel will vigorously oppose the confirmation of Chuck Hagel as our next secretary of defense. We have examined Mr. Hagel’s public record, which is marked by an animus toward our friend Israel and a surprising solicitude for our enemies Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah. We believe Mr. Hagel’s record–both his votes and his statements–place him well outside the American mainstream. We look forward to participating in a full and fair debate on Mr. Hagel’s record. We trust, at the conclusion of that debate, the United States Senate will withhold its consent to Mr. Hagel’s selection as Secretary of Defense.

For a full accounting of Chuck Hagel’s record on key foreign policy issues, please visit

The comment Chuck Hagel made in 2006 that the right wing and some pro-Israeli groups consider anti-Israel:

“I am a United States senator. I am not an Israeli senator. I’m a United States senator, I support Israel, but my first interest is I take an oath of office to the Constitution of the United States.”

Let’s not forget that Chuck Hagel voted for $38 billion to go to Israel over his senate career, so this isn’t someone who is anti-Israel. Chuck Hagel has the scars and “shrapnel” on his body to prove that he would be a good Defense Secretary. He is a Vietnam war veteran with two Purple Hearts, but that means nothing to those who aim to Susan Rice his nomination. The White House has reached out to the Jewish community to address their concerns with Hagel. I guess we will see everything thrown at Chuck Hagel, as they tried to discredit Susan Rice.

Several conservative Jewish organizations have been strongly opposed. Their concerns are multifold. Hagel has previously referred to the “Jewish lobby” (perceived to be a derisive reference) and he has opposed unilateral sanctions against Iran regarding its nuclear program. Iran is one of Israel’s most important national security concerns.  Hagel is criticized for a past op-ed in which he stated that Israel needs to show a commitment to peace.  Also, he has indicated he might support negotiations with Hamas although he supported a bill that said contact should be avoided until it recognized Israel’s sovereignty. Source

Personally, I think the outrage from the Jewish groups is overblown. As he said, his voting record where Israel is concerned is impeccable. “I didn’t sign on to certain resolutions and letters because they were counter-productive and didn’t solve a problem,” the Lincoln Journal Star reports. Chuck Hagel isn’t so out of the mainstream as they are trying to paint him as. Rather than cherry-pick one or two things, why not judge him on the entirety of his career? We have all made comments decades ago that we would probably walk back if given the chance or have evolved from previous positions. One thing about this man is that he says what he means and means what he says. So, if this is the in-your-face nominee from President Obama mocking Republicans, then so be it. We lived through Donald Rumsfeld.  The bigger question for me is why President Obama is surrounding himself with a cabinet that lacks diversity — a mostly all-white group of men. Once all the noise dies down, I predict that Chuck Hagel will be confirmed as our next Defense Secretary. So, I guess I should end by saying, “get ready for a Hagel Pentagon.”

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