By Andrew C. McCarthy, February 8, 2013 –
Powerline’s John Hinderaker thinks former senator Chuck Hagel’s nomination to be Obama’s defense secretary is already dead. He may be right.
Andrew’s post from last evening homes in on why. As Senator Ted Cruz pointed out in his superb questioning at the confirmation hearing (which irritated all the right people), Hagel has stonewalled the Senate regarding transcripts of his prior speeches. Hagel’s propensity to say stupid things is already notorious (see, e.g., the Let Freedom Ring USA video I mentioned yesterday). It’s thus hard to imagine that the substance of the speeches is the problem. No, the issue must be that Hagel has been giving speeches to, taking speaking fees from, and otherwise canoodling with what Andrew refers to as “unsavory” organizations. Two such groups might provide the coup de grace.
As John notes, Ben Shapiro has reported at the Breitbart site Big Peace that one of Hagel’s funding sources is a group purportedly called “Friends of Hamas.” That might make someone a good fit for president of Egypt, prime minister of Turkey, or any number of advisory posts on the White House staff. But given that being a “friend of Hamas” — at least the kind of friend who provides material support to that terrorist organization — is a crime in the United States, it may not be quite what the Senate is looking for in a secretary of defense.