The Corner

GOP to Filibuster Hagel Nomination

Republicans are filibustering Chuck Hagel’s nomination for secretary of defense, Senate minority leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) announced Thursday.

The Senate will vote to end debate on Hagel’s nomination Friday morning, Reid said. Democrats need at least five Republicans to meet the 60-vote threshold required to end a filibuster, though it is unclear whether they have those votes in the bag. A GOP aide says “it’s pretty clear” Reid does not have the votes. No major cabinet appointee has ever been successfully filibustered.

Reid was visibly agitated as he made the announcement. “This isn’t a high school getting ready for a football game,” he huffed on the Senate floor. “There are serious consequences to this delay.”

He went on to denounce Republicans for their “shocking” and “outlandish” behavior, falsely claiming that the United States will be without a secretary of defense “in less than two hours,” when Leon Panetta formally leaves the post. In fact, Panetta said he would remain on duty until his successor is sworn in.

Reid also dismissed GOP requests for further information about the deadly terrorist attack in Benghazi — a primary rationale for the filibuster — as “political theater,” and suggested Republicans were simply trying to placate the Tea Party. “Chuck Hagel had nothing to do with the attack in Benghazi,” Reid said. “It’s tragic they have decided to filibuster this qualified nominee.”

Andrew StilesAndrew Stiles is a political reporter for National Review Online. He previously worked at the Washington Free Beacon, and was an intern at The Hill newspaper. Stiles is a 2009 ...

Most Popular


How States Like Virginia Go Blue

So this is what it feels like to live in a lab experiment. As a native Virginian, I’ve watched my state come full circle. The last time Democrats enjoyed the amount of power in the Old Dominion that they won on Tuesday, I was entering middle school in Fairfax County. In 1993 the governor was a Democrat, one ... Read More
Books, Arts & Manners

Why Study Latin?

Oxford professor Nicola Gardini urges people to read and study Latin. He believes that Latin is the antidote for the modern age, which seems transfixed by the spontaneous, the easy, and the ephemeral. His new book, Long Live Latin: The Pleasures of a Useless Language, argues that Latin combines truth and ... Read More