On Thursday, Senate sources told Breitbart News exclusively that they have been informed that one of the reasons that President Barack Obama’s nominee for Secretary of Defense, Chuck Hagel, has not turned over requested documents on his sources of foreign funding is that one of the names listed is a group purportedly called “Friends of Hamas.”
That is quite the accusation, and it gives the Left a rare opportunity to go after the Breitbart constellation of websites. All they have to do to debunk it is to have Hagel reveal his foreign donors. I mean, how likely is it that the White house could have messed up vetting Chuck Hagel that badly…
Called for comment and reached via telephone, Associate Communications Director at the White House Eric Schultz identified himself, heard the question, was silent for several seconds, and then hung up the phone immediately without comment.
What is unclear is whether this is a somewhat choreographed maneuver whereby the White House, the Senate and Hagel can all end this. Not unlike Harriet Miers, whose nomination to the Supreme Court ended when the White House could not provide documents covered under executive privilege, this gives all sides a chance to end what has been a disastrous nomination.
…which is… accurate, but cruel. Not that I really care whether it’s cruel or not.
Basic news via email, but link via Instapundit. If that makes sense.
It’s actually… pretty simple: Chuck Hagel is a bit of a schlemiel. I’m not actually trying to reference Hagel’s Jewish problem*, here: it’s just that Yiddish has an excellent word to describe a sad-sack bungler, and English wants the useful words. It wants all the useful words.
…Anyway, Hagel is a schlemiel. Now, I know what people are thinking: they’re thinking “But… but… but being a schlemiel has NEVER been a barrier to acquiring a Cabinet post!” And they would be correct. We – read, both parties – have traditionally taken the opportunity given to us by the Cabinet to store inconvenient, superfluous, and/or ineffectual politicians for a while until they can be safely retired**. This is, in fact, a time-honored tradition. The problem here, though, isthat we typically do not nominate schlemiels for Secretary of Defense; a quick review of the list of them reveals a group of sharp-tongued, tough-minded, and generally strong-willed men who would have gone through Thursday’s Armed Services Committee hearings like a hot knife through soft butter. Continue reading The essential problem with the Chuck Hagel nomination.
You are from a state (Mississippi) that is exceptionally safe for the GOP, no matter who is running. And clearly, yesterday’s epic failure by Chuck Hagel to sell himself to skeptical Senators – or, indeed, Hagel’s epic failure to avoid embarrassing his new Democratic masters – has already made you decide to reassess your support of him for Secretary of Defense. So no doubt this post is unnecessary.
PS:The grassroots Republican base is developing a taste for primary challenges in the Senate. It’s also getting fairly proficient in carrying those off. So nobody assume that Cochran is bulletproof – particularly since every GOP partisan in the country will, by the end of the week, have seen Ted Cruz’s evisceration of Chuck Hagel.
He’s going to have a bumpy ride, based on testimony so far. Alas – and this concession will undoubtedly please the antiwar movement, which has been breathing hard about this nomination from Day One – at the end of the day we only have 45 seats in the Senate, and the Democrats have enough problems right now without making life difficult for Barry Obama. The Republicans are going to give him a good kicking, but unless 2014 Red State Democrats decide that they don’t dare risk it we’re probably going to see Hagel nominated.
Sorry, guys. There’s a limit to how much I can do without a working Senate majority.
[Sen Stuart Smalley Al] Franken, speaking during a press event in Rochester, said he supports limits on ammunition magazines to 10 rounds and tightening the nation’s system of background checks. But, he declined to say whether he supported a ban on assault weapons, a key provision of the president’s plan.
Via @rickklein. It’s only kind of good news because while it shows that Al Franken (or at least his staff) is aware that an actual ‘assault weapons ban’ would end up being a PR disaster for the Democrats*, it still indicates that the Other Side is alas wedded to the same magical thinking that made them think that limiting magazine sizes was actually going to do anything to combat gun violence. While this is convenient for the Republican party, it is not so convenient for the Republic: the system works best when both parties are engaged in – what’s the term of art, again? Ah, yes – are engaged in ‘reality-based’ thinking.
There really is something entertaining about the way that Barack Obama had to get Senator Jack Reed to try to shepherd Chuckie Hagel through the Senate confirmation process. Reed is more or less a nonentity; I had to look him up to see if he had any distinguishing characteristics from all of the other liberal Democratic Senators.