Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Chuck Hagel - Republican

Lots of people have called Senator Hagel a RINO (Republican in name only) or a liberal and that baffles me. Chuck Hagel has drawn the ire of many due to his (largely accurate) criticisms of President Bush on Iraq, but that does not make him a RINO or a liberal.

Chuck Hagel is clearly a Republican as his politics and his voting indicate. His political action committee has been raising and spending money to help out Republicans across the nation for the 2006 election. As of August 14, 2006, Sandhills PAC had given $314,500 to Republican candidates. Check out the list of candidates if you're curious. Also, Senator Hagel has been very active in helping his state's Republican party lately as well. Read more about it here.

As for his voting record, here are some bits that may help to clear up any confusion. While Senator Hagel does voice his disapproval, that is a minority of the time, as you can see from his voting record.

Year Hagel's Support of President Bush's Priorities in the Senate

2005 89%

2004 94%

2003 98%

2002 98%

2001 96%

Source: Congressional Quarterly, January 2006

Interest group ratings (based on voting records) are another way that we can get a sense of where the senator stands. For instance:

Club for Growth 2005 Congressional Scorecare for the Senate:
Chuck Hagel scored a 99%, ranking him #4 in the Senate on their issues

Also, military groups, such as the Non Commisioned Officer's Association, the Military Officer's Association, and the Vietnam Veterans of American have all rated the Senator very high on their issues, which are typically something that corresponds to the Republican point of view. Check out those scores here.

This week we will explore Senator Hagel's voting record on fiscal and social conservative issues.

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