Washington (CNN) – In an effort to pressure the Obama administration to answer a lingering question related to the Benghazi attack, Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, is reconsidering his pledge not to filibuster the nomination of former Sen. Chuck Hagel to be defense secretary, according to his spokesman Brian Rogers.
McCain wants to know if the president ever personally contacted anyone in the Libyan government during the Benghazi attack to seek assistance for the Americans in the compound. McCain, along with Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, and Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-New Hampshire, have been trying to get the answer for months, said Rogers, and they reiterated their request in a letter to the president on Monday.
Washington (CNN) - Members of the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday narrowly approved the choice of Chuck Hagel to serve as President Barack Obama's next defense secretary, sending the controversial nomination to the full Senate.
Hagel's nomination cleared the committee in a straight party line vote. No Republicans backed the former Nebraska GOP senator, a decorated Vietnam veteran who has come under fire on a range of issues relating to American foreign policy in the Middle East and elsewhere.FULL STORY
(CNN) – The Senate Armed Services Committee will hold a vote on the nomination of former Sen. Chuck Hagel for defense secretary at 230 p.m. ET Tuesday, the office of Chairman Carl Levin announced Monday.
While Hagel went through his confirmation hearings on January 31, Levin put off the vote after more than two dozen Republicans pressed Hagel to provide additional financial information about corporations and other organizations he's been associated with since leaving Congress.
Washington (CNN) – President Barack Obama's nominees for secretary of defense and CIA director could be held up by Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham unless the White House provides more information about its response to September's attack on an American diplomatic post in Libya.
The South Carolina lawmaker made the threat Sunday on CBS, using the phrase "no confirmation without information" in vowing to put a hold on the nominations of both John Brennan and Chuck Hagel unless the Obama administration provides more information about the Benghazi attack.
Washington (CNN) – A conservative advocacy group, the American Future Fund, is intensifying its campaign to defeat Chuck Hagel, the defense secretary nominee, with a new national ad highlighting some of his comments from last week's confirmation hearing widely-panned by critics.
The ad, entitled "Novice," is set to air nationally on some of the talk shows this coming Sunday and uses clips that paint Hagel's testimony in a poor light. In one clip he is asked about past comments he made that Israel was keeping "Palestinians caged up like animals." When asked about the remark, the ad uses part of Hagel's response aid at the hearing when he said "I don't remember the context or when I said it."
(CNN) - Democratic Senate Armed Services Chairman Carl Levin is making clear he is fed up with Republicans dragging their feet on Chuck Hagel's nomination for Defense Secretary, and now says he will schedule a vote soon, even over Republican opposition.
"We can't not vote because there is dissatisfaction on the part of people because that could be endless," said Levin, D-Michigan.
Washington (CNN) - Amid new controversy over his administration's targeted killing of American citizens, President Barack Obama has yielded to demands from Congress to turn over to them classified Justice Department legal advice justifying the policy.
The president's move comes on the eve of confirmation hearings Thursday for his CIA director-nominee John Brennan, and complaints from senators - including several Democrats - about secrecy surrounding the drone policy.FULL STORY
(CNN) - Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin postponed a panel vote that had been expected on Thursday on the nomination of former GOP Senator Chuck Hagel to be defense secretary.
The move came after Republicans demanded more financial information from Hagel, including details about compensation for speeches he delivered since leaving Capitol Hill.
Washington (CNN) - CNN has learned there are now at least five Republican senators who would oppose a filibuster of former Sen. Chuck Hagel to be secretary of defense, all but ensuring the embattled nominee will be confirmed in the coming days.
According to a CNN survey of senators, the five are Thad Cochran of Mississippi and Mike Johanns of Nebraska -who both support Hagel taking over the top post at the Pentagon – and John McCain of Arizona, Richard Burr of North Carolina, and Tom Coburn of Oklahoma – who all oppose Hagel's nomination but also disagree with blocking it by filibuster.