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Graham says Hagel will get vote some day

Feb. 17, 2013 at 1:11 PM

WASHINGTON, Feb. 17 (UPI) -- A critical Republican U.S. senator said Sunday a vote will eventually be taken on Chuck Hagel's nomination as secretary of defense.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said on "Fox News Sunday" President Obama "deserves great deference in his choices" for Cabinet secretaries and will eventually get a vote by the Senate.

Graham led the Republican effort that roiled Hagel's confirmation hearing. Graham used the hearings to press the White House for more details on the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya, and to chastise Hagel himself for his purported animosity toward Israel.

Graham told Fox that while Hagel was not at all qualified to be secretary of defense, it would have gone easier had Obama not tried to railroad the nomination.

"I would worry about our Congress being jammed to support a nominee The Washington Post has said is to the left of Obama on foreign policy," Graham said.

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., told Fox he had serious doubts about another Obama appointment, John Brenner's nomination to run the CIA, which he said stemmed from a lack of details about U.S. drone operations and the potential for strikes directed at American citizens.

"The president will not answer that he will not target Americans on American soil," Paul said, adding, "You should get some protection for being an American citizen ... there probably should be some process."

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