McCain: Hagel Knows He Was Wrong About Surge

Asked if leaning against nomination, McCain says 'I think that would be fair'


Sen. John McCain (R., Ariz.) discussed his tense exchange with defense secretary nominee Chuck Hagel during his confirmation hearing, saying he thinks Hagel knows he was wrong about opposing the troop surge in Iraq, and that he was leaning toward voting against him.

“The fact is that if we hadn’t done that, more American lives would have been lost unnecessarily,” McCain said. “So, for then-Senator Hagel to say, well, he’ll let history be the judge, he was there and involved. And I’m sure he’s wrong, and he knows he’s wrong on the basis of the facts of what happened.”

Adding he had “grave concerns” about Hagel as Secretary of Defense, host Chris Wallace asked, “So at this point it’d be fair to say you’re leaning against voting for him?”

“I think that would be fair,” McCain said.