Pew Research released a poll today that should give the White House cause for concern as the days tick by before Senator Chuck Hagel's senate confirmation vote to become Defense Secretary. The more the public gets to know Hagel, the less they like him. Over the course of a month, as public awareness increased, Hagel's favorables increased a mere four points, from 18 to 22, while his unfavorables jumped from 17 to 28 points.
The pressure isn't letting up, either. Today, Senator Lindsey Grahem sent a letter to Hagel asking for clarification on another round of controversial comments supposedly attached to the nominee:
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) sent a letter to Chuck Hagel today, asking whether he had made the reported comments (or anything like them) that “Israel has violated every UN resolution since 1967, that Israel has violated its agreements with the quartet, that it was risking becoming an apartheid state if it didn’t allow the Palestinians to form a state, … that the settlements were getting close to the point where a contiguous Palestinian state would be impossible … that Netanyahu was a radical … [and] that Hamas has to be brought in to any peace negotiation.” Moreover, Graham by no means has given up on seeking the financial information Hagel so far has refused to provide.
There's another development today in the great state of Nebraska. The University of Nebraska-Omaha is refusing to release Senator Hagel's archives to the media. According to the Weekly Standard, Hagel stands by the university's decision to keep sealed thousands of his papers, audio, video and transcripts of speeches:
Chuck Hagel's record in the Senate is well documented in the public domain,” says Hagel spokesman Marie Harf in an emailed statement.
“Given his extraordinary disclosures to date, which surpass the threshold applied to nominees, there is no need to make this archived material public.”
The archives are not open to the public, university officials say, because not everything there has been processed.
However, the university has also said that with Hagel's permission, they would grant the Weekly Standard's Daniel Halper access to the archive.
Thus far, Hagel is refusing that permission.
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