REPORT: Obama expected to pick Chuck Hagel for Pentagon… ‘Tough confirmation’

President Barack Obama is expected to name Chuck Hagel as his choice for defense secretary as early as Monday, as critics of the former Nebraska senator prepare to go to war to fight his expected nomination.

White House officials and sources close to Hagel declined to confirm toThe Cable that Hagel is the president’s choice to be the replace Leon Panetta at the helm of the Pentagon, but several sources close to the process said have told The Cable that the White House and Hagel have been in touch on a regular basis and that Hagel is indeed the expected pick. Decisions about the timing and logistics of the announcement are being finalized now.

The Cable had previously confirmed that Hagel successfully complete the vetting process, as have Deputy Defense Secretary Ash Carterand former Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michele Flournoy.

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Psaki: ‘Tough Confirmation Hearing’ for Hagel

Former Obama campaign traveling press secretary Jen Psaki said Friday former Sen. Chuck Hagel will have a “tough confirmation hearing” in a Friday interview with Andrea Mitchell.



Speculation about the potential nomination of former Sen. Chuck Hagel continues, though he faces serious questions from both sides. Late in 2012, Rep. Eliot Engel (D., N.Y.) said Hagel has “some kind of endemic hostility” toward Israel in an interview with “Newsmakers.”



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