Hagel reaching out to all 100 senators in push to win confirmation for Pentagon chief - InfoNews

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Hagel reaching out to all 100 senators in push to win confirmation for Pentagon chief

FILE - In this Jan. 7, 2013 file photo, President Barack Obama, left, and former U.S. Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., walk past each other during a new conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington, to announce that he is nominating Hagel, as the new Defense Secretary. Senate Republicans' reservations about Hagel heading the Pentagon is caught up in potent politics, from a proxy fight over President Barack Obama to more parochial concerns about nuclear weapons works. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)
January 15, 2013 - 12:07 AM

WASHINGTON - Former Sen. Chuck Hagel, President Barack Obama's choice to be defence secretary, is reaching out to all 100 senators and will be meeting personally with dozens of them starting this week.

That comes from an official working on his confirmation, who was not authorized to speak publicly on the matter and spoke on condition of anonymity.

The sessions will be vital for a nomination that faces outright opposition from a handful of Republicans, nervous questions from influential Democrats and plenty of non-committal senators.

Hagel's confirmation hearing before the Armed Services Committee will probably occur within weeks. Hagel has gotten backing from some key supporters, but he has been dogged by questions of whether he's soft on Iran, weak in his backing for Israel and opposed to gay rights.

News from © The Associated Press, 2013
The Associated Press

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