Powers: There’s No Reason Obama Needs to Fight for Hagel

Kirsten Powers: Hagel's 'not popular with Democrats'...if he can't get GOP votes, 'what's the point?'


CHRIS WALLACE: How much trouble is Hagel in and, given all the publicity he’s gotten as the person that President Obama wants to pick, if he doesn’t go ahead with this after what happened with Susan Rice, what kind of message does that send at the beginning of this president’s second term?

KIRSTEN POWERS: Well, to a lot of people, it would send the message that he’s not willing to fight for people — but there’s no reason he needs to fight for Hagel. I think with Susan Rice it was a little different; she’s very close to him, she’s been close to him for a long time. With Hagel, I don’t think he has a big constituency as Bill just outlined, certainly not a big constituency among Democrats. If he can’t get Republican votes, then what’s the point of it? He’s not popular with Democrats, you know, he’s had this run-in with the gay community. He’s apologized, the HRC has accepted the apology, but you know, there’s bad blood there. Michele Flournoy, who’s somebody–the name has been floated, you’d have a woman Secretary of Defense–

BILL KRISTOL: Who’s served in the Obama Defense Department in the first term, so actually is somebody that’s worked for Obama–

POWERS: Yeah. I think that would be a much more popular choice.

Get the news that matters most to you, delivered straight to your inbox daily.

Register today!