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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Alabama Republican party demands Shelby retract support of Hagel

The Alabama Republican party's steering committee has demanded that Senator Richard Shelby (R-Al) retract his announced support for Chuck Hagel's nomination to be Secretary of Defense (Hat Tip: Sunlight).
Shelby revealed last week that he intended to vote for Hagel. The announcement was treated by the media as a surprise, as it appeared to break Republican unity against Hagel. However, Shelby has supported a number of Hagel's controversial stances over the years. In 2007, for example, he joined Hagel in refusing to sign a letter to then-Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice asking her to encourage "friendly" Arab states to recognize Israel.
In announcing his decision last week, Shelby explained that he believed that whoever the Obama administration might nominate in Hagel's stead would be worse: "He was a pretty good Senator...I don't like a lot of things he's said, but you've got to think who would come after him." The party's base feels otherwise. As the American Spectator's Quin Hillyer reported Monday: "It has been an outpouring from people across the state,” State Republican Chairman Bill Armistead told me. “There have been phone calls from a lot of people, plus we’ve all been approached by people we know at churches and in our communities. I haven’t seen anything this strong in opposition to something done by one of our representatives in Congress in a long time.”
Hagel's confirmation is expected to receive a cloture vote Tuesday, followed by a formal vote of the Senate, which he is expected to win, largely along party lines. Opposition to Hagel is likely to be historic; no Secretary of Defense in recent history has been confirmed with more than three votes in opposition.
Can we stop calling Hussein Obama 'America's first post-partisan President' yet?

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At 4:56 AM, Blogger Sunlight said...

Didn't work. EVERY Dem and 4 Republicans voted for Hagel. "Just four GOP senators—Kentucky's Rand Paul, Alabama's Richard Shelby, Nebraska's Mike Johanns and Mississippi's Thad Cochran—voted for Mr. Hagel's nomination." (Rand Paul... WTH?!?)


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