Hagel Grilling Expected

    WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 22:  Former U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (L) greets Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin (D-MI) after Hagel met with Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) on Capitol Hill January 22, 2013 in Washington, DC. Hagel, who cochaired McCain's 2000 presidential campaign, has been nominated by U.S. President Barack Obama to succeed Leon Panetta as Secretary of Defense.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

    Hagel meeting Sen. Levin on Jan. 22. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty)

    This sounds like a reality-show version of Capitol Hill. Chuck Hagel’s critics are expected to grill him Thursday about his policies regarding the Middle East—and especially that vote against the Iraq War surge—at his confirmation hearing to become the next secretary of defense. Senators will be asking about, among other things, Hagel’s comments about the “Jewish lobby,” his 2011 statement that the Pentagon budget is “too bloated,” his remark that a diplomatic colleague was “aggressively gay,” and his vote against funding for the Iraq surge. A Republican, Hagel has already garnered the support of about a dozen Democrats—although seven Republicans say they will vote against him.

    Iraq-surge vote and more to be examined.

    'Watch a roundup of pre-confirmation Hagel critiques.'

    Read it at The Hill