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Hagel Debate Ends: Chuck Hagel Voted in as Secretary of Defense

By Kelli N
Epoch Times Staff
Created: February 26, 2013 Last Updated: February 26, 2013
Related articles: United States » National News
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Hagel debate ends: The U.S. Senate voted 58-41 on Tuesday in favor of Chuck Hagel for secretary of defense.

Former U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee during his confirmation hearing to become the next secretary of defense on Capitol Hill Jan. 31, 2013 in Washington, D.C. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Former U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee during his confirmation hearing to become the next secretary of defense on Capitol Hill Jan. 31, 2013 in Washington, D.C. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The Senate voted 58-41 on Tuesday, clearing the way for Chuck Hagel to lead the Pentagon as the new secretary of defense.

Hagel will replace outgoing Defense Secretary Leon Panetta.

Four Republicans and 54 Democrats voted for Hagel on Tuesday’s second, and final vote.

Obama nominated Hagel, a former Republican senator of Nebraska, for the position on Jan. 7.

Hagel’s nomination was met with criticism, especially from Senate Republicans.

“There are those of us who seek to cut waste, fraud, and abuse from the Department of Defense,” said Senator John McCain during a Senate floor debate earlier this month, reported Bloomberg News.

“Senator Hagel seeks something else entirely—to cut military capabilities that serve as tools to ensure our continued engagement through the world in support of America’s interests and those of our allies.”

Hagel is a conservative Republican and a decorated war hero. He also co-chaired Obama’s Intelligence Advisory Board.

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