Sunday, July 29, 2007

Hagel to speak at Panetta Lecture Series

It was announced that Chuck Hagel will be speaking next month in California.
Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Nebraska, and Sen. Bob Graham, D-Florida, will be the final speakers at this year's Leon Panetta Lecture Series on Aug. 13.
This lecture can be viewed live on cable television in Monterey, San Benito, Santa Cruz and Santa Clara counties, and north through the San Francisco Bay area, as well as east to the greater Sacramento area. C-SPAN is also invited to broadcast these lectures nationally.
From The Herald

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

New York Times - "Seeking a G.O.P. Opening on the War"

The New York Times had a good piece last week that had some particularly interesting things to say.

So with the Republican presidential field turned upside down, and a wide-open battle for the party’s nomination unfolding over the next six months, could there suddenly be room for a candidate who opposes the administration’s war policy?

That’s what Senator Chuck Hagel is trying to conclude.

Mr. Hagel, a Nebraska Republican, has long been among the loudest Iraq critics in his party, a position that he said was “very, very lonely over the last four years.” His conservative voting record has been overshadowed, in the eyes of many faithful Republicans, by his forceful criticism of how Mr. Bush has handled the war.

These days, Mr. Hagel is no longer feeling so alone.

As he walked across the Capitol, one day after the latest chapter of the Senate war debate ended, he said he is receiving fresh encouragement to consider a presidential candidacy. He intends to study the landscape and disclose his intentions “in the next few weeks.”

“There is no Republican presidential candidate with this point of view. There might be an opening for me on this,” Mr. Hagel said. “I’ve had three very significant Republican fundraisers come to me this week, all of whom said I should look at running.”

He declined to name the fundraisers, only saying: “They are three Bush people, not committed to any candidate yet. You would recognize two of the names, clearly.” With a smile, he added, “Of course I’d need more than three.”

Mr. Hagel conceded being stung by the negative reaction to a March 12 news conference in Omaha, when he announced – after significant fanfare – that he had made no decisions about his future. Since then, even during the war debate, he has maintained a decidedly lower profile as he contemplates whether to seek re-election, run for president or step away from public office.

“I think people have enough regard for me to know that I’m not a flake, that I’m a serious leader,” Mr. Hagel said. “Whether you agree with me or not – or whether you think I’d have a chance or not, that’s a different thing. But I don’t think anyone would doubt my sincerity to do a good job and do it right.”


One day earlier, the senator called a town meeting in Nebraska to share his views on Iraq. A crowd of 300 people gathered. “I expected I was going to get roughed up pretty good,” he said. “But there was an overwhelming response toward me.”

That doesn’t mean, of course, that the hate mail to his Senate office has entirely stopped. (It hasn’t.) And it doesn’t mean that Republican primary voters are ready for a candidate like him. (Even if he could raise the money, he concedes, it may not be.)

But it does provide him enough of a reason to not foreclose the idea entirely.

“It’s not a no. I have not said no,” Mr. Hagel said...“I don’t want to make a decision in the flurry of all this, the intensity of all this. Next month when we get a little break, I’ve got to sort it out. I’ve got to make a decision and I will.”

The article gives us a new idea about his decision timetable, something I haven't heard anything about in a while.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The blog is back

My apologies for the extended break. Between moving and the related activities the blog got put on hold. Now it's back.

Some of what you may have missed is in the posts below.

Hagel on Meet the Press

Chuck Hagel was on Meet the Press on July 8th, 2007. Here is the video:

Draft Hagel 08 Press Release

Here is the latest press release from Draft Hagel 08:


The Winner of Monday Night’s Democratic Debate: Republican Senator Chuck Hagel

Boston, MA – At the first CNN/YouTube Democratic Presidential Debate held Monday, July 24, Democratic contender Senator Joseph Biden (D-DE) was asked by a questioner: “If you had to pick any Republican member of Congress or Republican governor to be your running mate, who would it be? Without hesitation, Mr. Biden said: Chuck Hagel. When asked the same question, Democratic contender John Edwards (D-NC) said Chuck Hagel as well. Senator Chuck Hagel’s name continues to be batted around Washington political circles as a possible Republican, Independent, and now Democratic candidate for the ’08 election.

In a political environment immersed in hyper-partisanship and ideological polarization, one where political gamesmanship has become the watchword of the day in Washington, Senator Chuck Hagel (R-Nebraska) has managed to transcend partisan lines and earn respect
across the isle.

In his own party, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) calls Senator Hagel a “solid, thoughtful, conservative Republican” whose voice is invaluable to the nation, and who is “an indispensable member of the Republican team.” (Lincoln Star Journal, May 18, 2007, by Don Walton, “McConnell says Hagel's Iraq warnings were right”)

Hagel is expected to decide whether to pursue a presidential bid in the next few weeks. For the sake of unifying this nation with true leadership, the “” movement continues to ask Mr. Hagel to enter the presidential sweepstakes. We are confident that, as president, Hagel can forge a bipartisan consensus to tackle critically important issues which have been mired in partisanship. These issues include extricating the United States from Iraq, immigration reform, and returning fiscal sanity to our nation.

Hagel is an accomplished mainstream independent-minded conservative voice that emphasizes realist internationalism abroad and fiscal austerity at home in the spirit of former Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower and Gerald R. Ford, and former Secretaries of State James Baker and Colin Powell.

Senator Hagel, a member of the Foreign Relations Committee, maintains that the only way to end the bloodshed in Iraq is through a political accommodation. A Vietnam Veteran, Senator Hagel has called our misadventure in Iraq “the most dangerous foreign policy blunder in this country since Vietnam.” To bring the political solution to fruition, Senator Hagel supports establishing an international mediator with the “backing and authority of the international community to engage Iraq’s political, religious, ethnic, and tribal leaders in an inclusive political process.” (Financial Times, July 3, 2007, by Chuck Hagel, “Internationalize Iraq”). Senator Hagel’s position on the Iraq War is in sharp contrast to the major Republican Primary candidates who continue to support the failed policies of the Bush Administration.

Senator Hagel has shown his fiscal conservative stripes by breaking with his Party and by opposing the fiscally irresponsible prescription-drug program under Medicare. In addition, Senator Hagel is a steadfast supporter of states rights, vehemently opposing the President’s federal “No Child Left Behind Act.” What’s more, Senator Hagel opposes the President’s call for a Constitutional amendment codifying marriage, emphatically stating: “I don't think the federal government has any business in dictating what constitutes a marriage.”

It is for these reasons that we consider Senator Chuck Hagel to be the best candidate to reclaim the leadership of the mainstream of this country. We believe Hagel’s message will strike a resonant chord across the “great political divide.” We would be glad to speak with you at-length about the “Draft Hagel 08” Movement. For more information, please contact us.

Rich Rubino, Press Spokesperson
Draft HAGEL 08 is not authorized by or associated with any candidate, candidate's committee, PAC, or political party.

Financial Times - "Internationalize Iraq"

Senator Hagel had a piece, Internationalize Iraq, in the Financial Times on July 3rd, 2007. Once again, Chuck Hagel clearly and articulately lays out his views on how the United States should approach Iraq. The piece is well worth a read.

Press Release catch up

Here are some of the press releases you may have missed:

Senate Passes “Wounded Warriors Act”

Hagel’s International Mediator Language Included in Levin-Reed Amendment on Iraq War Policy

Hagel-Levin Introduce Amendment to Protect U.S. Military Deployment Standards

Hagel Introduces Comprehensive Amendment on U.S. Iraq War Policy

Hagel Introduces Comprehensive Energy Reform Legislation

For a full listing of the press releases from Chuck Hagel's Senate office, see his Senate website.