Chuck Hagel‘s confirmation hearing to become Secretary of Defense took place yesterday — and today the Morning Joe crew discussed Hagel’s less-than-stellar performance. As well as the tense exchanges that took place between Hagel and several Republicans, which Joe Scarborough deemed “embarrassing.”
“It was very painful to watch,” Andrea Mitchell said, remarking on Sen. John McCain‘s “hostile” attitude and Hagel being more accustomed asking questions than answering them.
“I’m sorry, out of that exchange, it was not Chuck Hagel who looked bad,” Scarborough responded. Yes, in many ways Hagel was inadequately prepared, but: “If the Republican Party thinks badgering an ill-prepared witness that way is going to help them with middle America, they don’t know middle America. They could have just let him talk around in circles.” It was “embarrassing,” he observed, pointing particularly to McCain and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX).
Donny Deutsch contrasted Hagel’s performance with Hillary Clinton‘s (during her Benghazi testimony). That, too, was badgering, but she was very prepared, he said. But badgering is not the way to go.
Sens. John Barraso (R-WY) and John Thune (R-SD) also had concerns, but they did so in a respectful way, Scarborough added, noting that many Republicans would do well to “emulate” them.
The overarching question the panel seemed to agree on was: “Who prepared this guy?”
You can’t not give him the job based on this hearing, Deutsch said, but you can’t ignore “some very serious things” happened.
Watch, courtesy of MSNBC:
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