After the confirmation hearings began for Chuck Hagel, headlines such as “Hagel Hits Republican Buzz Saw”, “Hagel on the Hot Seat” or “Lindsey Graham Takes Hagel to the Woodshed” appeared.
Most Senate Republicans have shown resolved resistance to confirming the nomination of Hagel. Among other concerns, he has received heavy criticism for not being tough on Iran or clearly and unquestionably in support of Israel.
However a second Republican Senator has stepped forward announcing he will vote for Hagel’s confirmation as Secretary of Defense. The first Senator announcing his affirmative vote was Thad Cochran of Mississippi who endorsed Hagel Tuesday. Today Sen. Mike Johanns who is Nebraska’s senior Republican senator said of his decision to vote for Hagel,
“Chuck earned this endorsement.”
A Senate Armed Services Committee vote could take place as early as next Thursday. The committee is made up of 14 Democrats and 12 Republicans. A full Senate vote will follow. Hagel needs five Republican votes to reach the 60 votes required to prevent a GOP filibuster.