Hagel’s troubles

**Note: The Leavenworth Street offices have been cold and dusty this past week and a half as other, extremely pressing, matters have kept our nose from the political grindstone. So with that, we would open the comments section a little wider to your political wisdom and snarkery. -Ed.**

Remember when Chuck Hagel brought the nation’s press to Omaha a few years back to announce that he was holding off on any announcement that he might make regarding an announcement to run for President?

It was back then that Dana Bash brought the CNN cameras to Omaha to witness Hagel’s hot mess that day.

And yesterday, after Hagel’s less-than-impressive hearing in front of the Senate Armed Services Committee regarding his nomination for Secretary of Defense, Bash reported, that (paraphrasing)

“…it was all the buzz on the floor of the Senate…Democrats and Republicans shocked that Hagel was not doing as well as he could … it was all the talk … about how ill prepared he was on some of the most basic comments that he has made in the past … even supportive Democrats were shaking their heads…there is disbelief…especially because he knows how this works…so a lot of people are perplexed.”

A kicker too, watch Hagel’s bullshitting regarding his statements on The Surge.

Hagel is trying to say, “well, I was referring to the war as a whole.” Bullshit. He was talking about the surge. Everyone was talking about the surge. It was one everyone’s lips. And Hagel championed himself as the Leader of those who didn’t want to send soldier “into that grinder” via the surge. This was not BEFORE the war, mind you.

The fact that Hagel can’t step on that point is frankly amazing.

We chuckled that Hagel started talking about “containment” with Iran — since many feel that Hagel relives everything about American foreign policy through the lens of Vietnam.

And then Hagel’s slightly snarky response to Senator Inhofe — that he didn’t know why Iran supports his nomination — saying that he has no idea, since he has hard enough time understanding American politics.

And we get the chuckle and disdain he was trying to elicit — but one could very well question that, Isn’t Iranian politics EXACTLY the sort of thing we hope the Secretary of Defense understands? Shouldn’t he have a pretty good idea when they are serious or whether they’re just flapping their gums, and why.

And Senator Deb Fischer was tough on Hagel as well.

Which begs the question…will he get confirmed?

The CW is that if there’s no filibuster, he’ll make it.
And that Hagel was sort of intentionally non-confrontational at the hearings so he could just sit back and coast to a nomination. And that may very well happen.

But others note that if, say, a Senator Cruz decides to filibuster, the Dems may have a very difficult time rounding up 5 votes to put Hagel over the top.

(Oh, and did anyone else notice, as one of our fearless readers did, that Hagel was introduced by two Virginia Senators, instead of Nebraskans? Hmm.)


The Mayor’s race is progressing along, beneath the surface of the public. Much fund-raising and all that.

We got a chuckle out of a letter from the Jean Stothert camp to one…Dan Welch:

These things HAPPEN, and we don’t mean to harp on the Team Stothert. But you gotta admit that it’s worth a smile.


And we wait…and wait…and wait… for a decision on the Keystone XL Pipeline.

But in the meantime, a visitor to our Nation’s Capital noticed that the anti-pipeline folks continue to…deface property.

Here’s a shot in Dupont circle.


Have a great weekend, stay warm, and have at it on whatever topic you’d like in the comments!
(Oh, and buy your Valentine’s Day stuff via our Amazon links!)


  1. west of DC says:

    The defense industry lobby in DC is working hard to torpedo stuttering Chuck because job one for any new SOD will be cutting defense budget. For all of the GOP posturing on budget cuts they will never turn on their defense buddies. Much the same as you will never see Sen Scott L turn on his tobacco industry friends.

  2. ricky says:

    Okay Mr Street Sweeper here goes:

    Do the Omaha Public School’s have a functioning board or do they not? Debate in the Unicam says probably not. So does that mean that the new Superintendent does not have a contract since that action was finalized this January with supposedly a board with no legal standing? (If I were Mark Evans I would not come within 20 miles of the Omaha Public Schools what with the state thinking they know best)
    Looks like to me a story was spun about a silly late swearing in complaint to help along LB 125 but the powers that be won’t go as far as to say board action is null and void. Which makes no sense.
    And, did Senator Lautenback “forget” to vote on his own LB 125 or did he in the end realize that the bill is a very bad bill?


  3. Bob Loblaw says:

    I know that there are a lot of people smarter and more plugged in than me on this site. My question is; Will the Governors income tax bill go through?

  4. Cottonwood Eagle says:

    Not if my state senator Galen Hadley’s vote counts. He believes, with his vote for LB599, that it is okay to take money from Nebraska taxpayers to fund free health care for illegals, but NOT to give Nebraskans a break on income tax. That income tax is necessary, you see, to keep funding free health care for illegals, and we wouldn’t want to deny them that freeby would we.

  5. to Bob says:

    Would predict that there would changes/adjustments to tax code that will pass this session including removal of some exemptions, reduction in income taxes and increase in tobacco taxes. Just won’t see the big leap that the governor is pushing. And I am pretty good with predictions – said that Romney would carry Nebraska.

  6. Scotty Chriss says:

    Hey folks I’m leaving KFAD after Smash got fired for ratings. I don’t understand why his ratings were significantly lower when the Super Duper Ultimate Insider Report was on. Arbitron must not count podcast listeners I guess. Oh so now I will be on KOIL on the Mecca Show every monday. Make sure to tune in as I will be bringing my insights on local politics and continue my effoert to defeat Lee Terry. Cheers!

  7. Welch Fan says:

    Looks like the rumors are true about Nabity’s campaign is falling apart. Pete Botkin resigned from the campaign. Nabity now has no ground game for the primary. The Rats are jumping ship!!!

  8. To Chris Scott says:

    I’m wondering how you are an insider. Lee terry doesn’t like you. The governor can’t stand you. Our 2 US senators don’t even know you. I would love for you to post something that qualifies you to have that title. Who shares with you the inside scoop?

  9. Anonymous says:

    Macdaddy is finally right about something. The Democrats rule the roost now. Get used to it. The way the GOP base is dying off and the Democratic base is growing it will be “that ‘s the way it was” for a very long time.

  10. Chris Scott says:

    7:15- you have to admit, it was a good salad! All of your other thoughtful questions will be explored every Monday at 4:07 on the Mighty 1290 KOIL!

  11. Cottonwood Eagle says:

    Best line yet describing Hagel’s performance: “It is very clear from the testimony that Sen. Hagel will not be bringing the potato salad to the next Mensa picnic.”

  12. Macdaddy says:

    There ya go. Democrats now own all this including appointing a breath-takingly stupid man as SecDef. He’s even dumber than I thought. Are you Democrats not the least bit concerned? Do you feel even the slightest motivation to even try to have a competent, well-functioning government? At least try.

  13. NADC Watcher says:

    We are amazed. Nabity had been lining contributors up for three years. Many thought he might have raised over $300K. To come in where he did and to have already spent $103,000+ with almost nothing to show for it must be beyond disappointing. Only $170,000 cash on hand?

    We also look at reporting irregularities and must call into question some funny reporting. For starters, Nabity has been floating a poll to potential contributors since last June/July. His poll was conducted by Public Opinion Strategies. Not cheap. Yet he only reports $2600.00? Something smells a little fishy there. What is Dave Nabity trying to hide?

  14. anonymous says:

    February 1st at 7:25PM: Or, maybe it is because Welch is cheap and milk cows for free with his impeccable words and lasting charm.

  15. Pete Botkin says:

    @welch fan
    I left the campaign for personal reasons to pursue another career opportunity and take time for personal improvement. My leaving had nothing to do with a lack of confidence in Dave Nabity or his campaign- quite the opposite. I wish the campaign the best and will be watching the race closely. My career decisions are none of your business and I respectfully ask you to direct your attention somewhere besides posting about my career on a blog.

  16. anonymous says:

    Hey Pete—Best of luck on your career opportunity. Good start with your words that shoveled back against the tide to undermine Dave Nabity’s campaign.

  17. Just The Facts says:

    Read Jean Stothert’s NADC report from her City Council campaign. Dan Welch was a supporter and donated to her campaign. No wonder he is in her data base.

  18. Not A Dave Crabbity Fan says:

    Trouble continues to brew for Crabity-Nabity campaign. Pete Botkin leaves to work on other campaigns while big news is about to hit the airwaves regarding Crabity’s campaign. Possible withdrawl??? Stay tuned!!!

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