WASHINGTON, D.C. - The confirmation hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee is underway for President Obama's pick for the next Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, and it's expected to get heated.
Hagel, a former republican senator from Nebraska, should'nt expect a friendly reception on capitol hill.
Texas Senator John Cornyn laid out the case against hagel from the senate
floor wednesday, saying hagel is tough on israel, and soft on iran.
"he simply does not understand the true basis of the u.s.-israel alliance," Cornyn said, "and he's the same person who suggested that the united states might be able to live with a nuclear iran."
Some well-funded conservative groups have taken those charges public with websites and television ads urging people to call their senator to oppose Hagel's confirmation.
(sot: the emergency committee for israel)
The Emergency Committee for Israel pointed out that while President Obama says he supports sanctions on iran, Hagel voted against them.
But hagel has been aggressive in fighting the accusations. He's made the rounds here on capitol hill to talk with former colleagues and clarify his positions.
"Senator hagel and i had a very good meeting to talk about the department of
defense and its future," said Senator Dick Durbin, a democrat from Illinois, "as well as his role."
Hagel picked up a big endorsement on the democratic side when he won over New York Senator Chuck Schumer.
"I can now say that i will support his nomination and urge my colleagues," Schumer said, "many of whom have had similar doubts to me, to do the same."
If confirmed, Chuck Hagel will be the first fomer enlisted man, and first Vietnam Vet to become Secretary of Defense.
After today's hearing, senators will likely have two days to submit additional written questions to Hagel.
The Senate Armed Services Committee and the full senate could vote on Hagel's confirmation as early as next week.
Friday, May 24 2013 12:08 PM EDT2013-05-24 16:08:19 GMT
SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. – The California Highway Patrol will begin new safety enforcements on east Highway 166 during the Memorial Day weekend. The additional patrols are being supported through theMore >>
The California Highway Patrol will begin new safety enforcements on east Highway 166 during the Memorial Day weekend.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 11:40 AM EDT2013-05-24 15:40:40 GMT
SANTA MARIA, Calif. – Santa Maria Police are investigating a shooting that occurred on the 800 block of Tabitha Lane. Just before 4:00am Friday morning, officers responded to a call of shots fired intoMore >>
Santa Maria Police are investigating a shooting into a residence that occurred on the 800 block of Tabitha Lane.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 11:31 AM EDT2013-05-24 15:31:28 GMT
GREENVILLE, Calif. -- The U.S. Geological Survey recorded a 5.7 magnitude earthquake in Northern California Thursday night. The epicenter was northwest of Greenville and was felt in several other surroundingMore >>
The U.S. Geological Survey recorded a 5.7 magnitude earthquake in Northern California Thursday night. The epicenter was northwest of Greenville and was felt in several other surrounding cities.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 4:18 AM EDT2013-05-24 08:18:45 GMT
CENTRAL COAST, Calif. - You can't say "summer" without "sequel." This weekend, two big ones are hitting the box office. Here is a breakdown of the latest movies coming to theaters: THE HANGOVER PARTMore >>
CENTRAL COAST, Calif. - You can't say "summer" without "sequel." This weekend, two big ones are hitting the box office.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 2:33 AM EDT2013-05-24 06:33:48 GMT
ORCUTT, Calif. - Righetti High School students showed off their works of art on Thursday night, hoping to raise money for an important cause. The art showcased the work of more than 600 students, featuringMore >>
ORCUTT, Calif. - Righetti High School students showed off their works of art on Thursday night, hoping to raise money for an important cause.More >>