NBC’s Andrea Mitchell said the potential nomination of former Sen. Chuck Hagel to Secretary of Defense has “serious problems” if Democrats like Sen. Charles Schumer will not come to his defense:
GREGORY: Andrea, I want to talk about the second-term cabinet. Chuck Hagel did not get a ringing endorsement from Sen. Schumer or from Sen. Graham this morning if he’s going to be Secretary of Defense —
MITCHELL: What Sen. Schumer said was really very revealing. If a Democratic Senator is not going to come to Chuck Hagel’s defense, I think there (are) serious problems there.
GREGORY: He did not come to his defense–
MITCHELL: At all.
GREGORY: This is going to be the second consecutive nomination where the president doesn’t get his first choice.
MITCHELL: This White House cannot continue to float trial balloons and then not have them shot down. The president can’t get perceived to be rolled by opponents. The problem that Chuck Hagel has is — who has got a lot of support in the foreign policy community — he’s now getting shot at from the left and the right because of his past comments, which he has now retracted and apologized for, against gays.