Hagel will likely be nominated for Secretary of Defense, not State. But his bluntness towards Israel makes me like him even more.
He's not anti-Israel. He just doesn't kiss their arse like most in Congress. He's like a friend who tells you the truth about yourself whether it offends you or not.
It's not 100% certain that Brown will win Kerry's seat but the Dems don't have a strong bench in Massachusetts. The only possible candidate on the Dems side with as much name recognition as Brown is Deval Patrick and Patrick says he wants to finish his term as governor.
Anything that comes out of the hearing will take forever to be published -- and not entirely because of Democratic Party delay (actually, it's in their interest to get it all out as soon as possible). Answers to additional questions for the record can take 6 months for pedestrian hearings, and Jim DeMint is likely to submit all his sharp-hatchet questions in writing, since he rarely has the courage or character to ask them in person.
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