by Frank J. Gaffney, Jr.
February 12 2013, WASHINGTON DC: The Center for Security Policy today urged Senators to reject President Obama’s nomination of Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense—and endorsed the use of a filibuster to prevent a vote to ratify the highly problematic and manifestly unqualified former Senator’s appointment.
The Center stressed that, in addition to an up-or-down vote on Hagel’s nomination, it plans to evaluate and score each Senator’s potential cloture vote on any filibuster in its Congressional Scorecard.
The Center for Security Policy’s Congressional Scorecard has been published for every Congress since 1994, to inform voters, policymakers and the media of where their legislators stand on the most important national security issues America faces. The Center’s pick of the highest scorers earns the title “Champion of National Security.”
The Center’s emphasis on this nomination underscores the great potential harm for this country’s national security interests that a Hagel tenure at the Defense Department could create.
The letter is below:
I am writing to inform you that the Center for Security Policy intends to score both the potential cloture vote on any filibuster of the nomination of Sen. Chuck Hagel to become Secretary of Defense, as well as any vote on confirmation of Sen. Hagel. Sen. Hagel has a highly troubling record on critical matters of national security which we believe should disqualify him from serving as Secretary of Defense, including 1) his support for U.S. nuclear disarmament, demonstrated by his co-authorship of the 2012 “Global Zero” report; 2) his assertion after passage of the Budget Control Act of 2011, which already cut defense spending by $487 billion over ten years, that the Department of Defense is “bloated” and needs to be “paired down”; 3) his demonstrated hostility towards the State of Israel, our most reliable ally in the Middle East; and 4) his failure to appreciate the threat posed by Iran, as demonstrated by his past lack of support for sanctions and his public statement that military action against Iran was not a “viable, feasible, or responsible option.”
We will be scoring negatively those Senators who vote in favor of cloture as well as those who vote in favor of confirming Sen. Hagel.
The Center has been scoring national security votes through its National Security Scorecard since 1994. Scorecards can be viewed at: http://www.centerforsecuritypolicy.org/type/congressional-scorecards. Senator Inhofe, now the Ranking Member on the Senate Armed Services Committee, when referring previously to his prior designation on our scorecard as a “Champion of National Defense”, identified the Center for Security Policy as “one of the leading national security policy organizations”.
Frank J. Gaffney, Jr.
President and CEO
Center for Security Policy