Chuck Hagel

Inhofe pushes against proceeding to final up-or-down vote on Hagel

by Jeremy Herb, The Hill  |  published on February 22, 2013


The top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee is calling for Republican senators to block former Sen. Chuck Hagel’s (R-Neb.) confirmation once again when the Senate returns next week.

Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) sent a “Dear Colleague” letter to senators Thursday lobbying for them to vote against cloture on Hagel, saying that voting to end debate is the equivalent of voting to confirm Hagel for the top Pentagon post.

Republicans last week blocked Hagel’s confirmation from proceeding with a 58-40 vote, which was the first ever filibuster of a Defense secretary nominee.
Inhofe’s push against proceeding to a final up-or-down vote on Hagel when Congress returns puts him at odds with Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) — who stepped down as ranking member of the Armed Services panel this year — and other Republicans who say they will vote for cloture next week even if they oppose Hagel’s confirmation.

“I hope the extra time afforded to review his record has been beneficial and you once again, will join me in voting against cloture,” Inhofe wrote in the letter, obtained by The Hill.

Inhofe has been one of the most vocal opponents of Hagel, alleging that he was “cozy” with Iran and endorsed by Tehran due to statements from Iran’s foreign ministry.

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