What's holding up Hagel confirmation?
Sen. Richard Blumenthal weighs in
- Duration 6:48
- Date Feb 10, 2013
Sen. Richard Blumenthal weighs in
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This transcript is automatically generated
Take on being Ghazi the hagel Brennan confirmations and the looming sequester.
Is democratic senator Richard Blumenthal -- now from Stamford Connecticut I trust senator the whether or not too bad where you are.
Well the roads are being cleared and people ought to travel now is you have suggested rather than waiting but we're.
I'm digging digging out.
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- On face the nation over on CBS where he -- is going to do everything he can't block the nominations of John Brennan for the CIA Chuck Hagel.
For secretary of defense until and -- less the president comes up with a full accounting of where he was what he was doing.
During that attack on the Ben Ghazi consulate in the CIA -- your response.
Senator Graham has raised some very thoughtful and important questions and certainly.
Pointedly raised them in the hearing with.
I believe that senator hagel confirmation will go forward and that the senate will vote to approve it.
The votes are there are at least as of last week and I think that the question about senator hagel really is.
Whether he's qualified to be secretary of defense and I think he's shown.
By a his statements.
On Iran where he has said that he is in favor of sanctions and unilateral military action if necessary on Israel that he.
Would strongly support Israel's security his commitment to.
Stopping sexual assault military a variety -- -- policies where he and the president court.
That he is qualified and the president really deserves to pick his team he is deserving of some progress in that respect and so a number of Republicans and others.
Have indicated that they will.
Vote to end any filibuster attempt and on senator hagel will -- -- mr.
Brennan I think there are there questions there to.
Global war what about senator this idea though that there has not been a full accounting of President Obama is whereabouts and his involvement.
During the Ben Ghazi attack from what you have hurt are -- still holes there that need to be filled -- There may be some questions that need to be answered but holding.
The confirmation proceedings.
In effect as a kind of condition or even perhaps.
Prerequisites for answering those questions I think I would unnecessarily delay.
Those approvals that the president deserves to happen.
Leon Panetta outgoing secretary defense said in testimony.
This past week that he had one telephone call.
With the president joint chiefs staff chairman Martin -- who -- she was also on the line during that phone calls about thirty minutes long during the entire unfolding.
Event in Ben Ghazi -- do you think that that was a level of involvement that.
Was appropriate for the president were you surprised that that was the only phone call.
The secretary Panetta indicated that.
There were actions that he was taken with the benefit of hindsight thing that perhaps would have been different.
But of course he also said that the major.
Was in fact an intelligent -- knowing what was happening.
On the ground so.
Will need to revisit all the procedures that -- used all of the actions that were taken in light of the need for greater intelligence which he identified.
As the major.
In effect gap during that time.
Of course coming up -- not Tuesday is the president's annual State of the Union Address it said that he's going to be focusing on jobs and the economy didn't do you believe senator that he is going to pay the appropriate amount of attention.
To an issue that really has been preeminent.
Among the concerns that Americans are facing in this still struggling economy.
John I think he's going to make jobs in the economy the centerpiece.
Of the -- union and also the centerpiece of these next months and perhaps even years he clearly believes that we need to push forward on measures to stop gun violence.
I strongly support his efforts there especially.
Requirement that he's proposed and I strong support for national background can.
On firearms and ammunition my proposal.
But also on immigration reform I think he will talk about immigration accountability and accountable immigration reform that provides earn citizenship.
But the centerpiece will be jobs and the economy and he will recognize that more needs to be -- particularly for our veterans who are coming back in increasing numbers.
And of course that the president will and undoubtedly -- this sequester and and again his call for -- smaller package.
Tax increases and spending cuts senate Democrats and are talking about -- in the -- down the road.
All the way to the end of the year it and I think a lot of Americans rightly have a question senator.
Why does this keep getting kicked down the road and done in small bits and pieces as opposed to some grand bargain.
Where we can start to get the deficits and that the debt under control.
And a grand bargain John or a an overarching more permanent deal is exactly what we need and I.
Perfectly well understand the question that have been raised by a lot of Americans about why.
It hasn't been done and I think the president's preference would be for that kind of more permanent.
Larger solution but remember what sequester means for example.
To our military readiness you mention secretary -- he said.
In these testimony during this week's hearing that the sequester.
Would be irresponsible for congress to permit he used the word irresponsible and the reason is that across the board arbitrary.
Cuts were designed to be.
And intolerable and we should do everything we can to avoid that kind of disastrous impact to our military readiness.
There it are balanced -- is involving revenue.
And spending cuts we need to cut spending responsibly protect -- and strengthen Medicare and similar programs and close the loopholes.
That apply to the wealthiest Americans and largest corporation that kind of larger.
You've referred to as a grand bargain is what optimal way we should seek.
Well there certainly will be a lot of debate over that in the next few weeks -- senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut thanks for joining us and we'll see you later on with the shuttle.
Thank you John appreciate it.