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Hagel, Schumer and the Moment of Chuck (PHOTOS)

Is everyone in the news these days named Chuck? From Hagel to Todd, see photos of Chucks in the headlines.

From left: AP; Getty (2)

From left: AP; Getty (2)

The Moment of Chuck

Chuck’s fate may lie in Chuck’s hands, and Chuck is reporting about it. The news these days reads frustratingly as tongue twisters, thanks to the plethora of men named Chuck making headlines. There’s Chuck Hagel, the polarizing nominee for defense secretary, and Chuck Schumer, the senator in whose hands Hagel’s fate rests. Plus, there’s NBC News chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd and news-making Chucks from the pop-culture world, like Public Enemy’s Chuck D—not to mention the fine work Chuck Zeiser, winner of the Kiwanis Club of Chattanooga’s Distinguished Service Award. Here, a stroll through what can only be dubbed “The Moment of Chuck.”

Alex Wong/Getty

Chuck Hagel

If Chucks are on the rise, then Hagel is their leader. Obama’s nominee for defense secretary has been the news cycle’s biggest lightning rod these past few weeks, with debate raging over whether the former senator’s views on Israel and Iran, and past statements about the gay community, could prevent him from being confirmed to the prime Cabinet position. With every red flag that’s been raised, so has the profile of this, perhaps the currently most famous, Chuck.

Jacquelyn Martin/AP

Chuck Schumer

Chuck Schumer is a stalwart of the Chucks, never really leaving the news since first being elected as U.S. senator from New York in 1998. These days, the Democrat has been ensnared in the Hagel nomination process, pegged as the kingmaker whose endorsement—or lack thereof—would determine whether Hagel ends up being confirmed as Pentagon chief. The big development Tuesday: he publicly supported Hagel’s nomination. 

Charles Dharapak/AP

Chuck Todd

Who’s the guy you’re likely to find reporting on these two Chucks? That would be NBC News correspondent Chuck Todd. The chief White House correspondent recently made news of his own for pressing the Oval Office on the idea of minting a $1 trillion platinum coin, as well as putting the administration on blast for the lack of diversity among its staffers. “I think that the White House is being held—they brought this higher standard on themselves when they smacked around Mitt Romney, and the ‘binders full of women,’ and the issues that they made in their campaign,” Todd said.

Dan Steinberg/AP

Chuck D

Chuck D is one of the Chucks in the public eye the longest. The Public Enemy rapper is finding resurged relevance with the upcoming induction of the hip-hop group into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April. He’s just as outspoken as ever, recently sitting down with Rolling Stone to gripe about the lack of respect old-school hip-hop groups receive from the music industry, after wrapping his Hip-Hop Gods tour. “I’m perturbed at the major media for not covering us,” he said. “You didn’t hear about any tours over the last 10 years that weren’t Eminem or Rick Ross or Dre or Jay-Z or Kanye. The media was licking their ass, but we did quite well across the country and got no attention.” Expect Chuck to get plenty attention when he’s inducted into the Hall of Fame alongside Rush and Heart in April.

Jason Redmond/AP

Chuck Lorre

Who’s the more powerful Chuck: the one about to be confirmed as United States defense secretary, or the one who rebirthed the career of Charlie Sheen? Chuck Lorre is easily television’s head honcho. He unleashed a rehab-ed Charlie Sheen on us all by casting him in Two and a Half Men. (Of course, Sheen trash Lorre when he exited the show.) Six seasons in, The Big Bang Theory, which Lorre also created, scored its highest ratings ever—and continues to be the highest-rated comedy on TV. Lorre also helped Melissa McCarthy score her first Emmy for Mike and Molly, and the numbers for that show ain’t too shabby either. It was just announced that the next career he’ll shepherd to TV-star status is Anna Faris, who will star as a single mom his new sitcom pilot.

Patrick Semansky/AP

Chuck Pagano

He’s the most heartwarming Chuck. The city of Indianapolis was devastated back in October when the beloved Colts coach announced that he was battling leukemia and would be taking a leave of absence from the sidelines. Pagano made his return to the football field Dec. 30 in the Colts game against the Texans, after beating his disease on Christmas Eve. After hugging his family and friends in the Colts tunnel before heading out to the field, Pagano got a rousing standing ovation from the fans in attendance. “Thank you all for, like I’ve said before, your support, thoughts, prayers,” he said over the P.A. system. If that’s not enough, he wrote another letter to Colts fans earlier this month, thanking them for being on his side.

CEC Entertainment Inc., via AP

Chuck E. Cheese

It was once the place “where a kid can be a kid.” Now it’s the place where a person can be stabbed. Marring the Chuck name, children’s restaurant and arcade franchise Chuck E. Cheese has found itself the site of a disturbing number of crimes in the past months: a shooting in the parking lot of one in Illinois. A stabbing at another, again in Illinois. Various Chuck E. Cheese franchises have hosted a brawl, a robbery, and a girl fight. Nostalgic fans may have been bummed out by a recent redesign of the titular mouse’s image, but the franchise certainly needed the rebranding.  

Eric Risberg/AP

Two-Buck Chuck

Trader Joe’s extreme value wine is a perennial hero to us all.

Everett Collection

Charlie Brown

Buck up, Chuck. Forty-seven years after it originally aired, A Charlie Brown Christmas delivered stellar ratings. After all these years, it was still the highest-rated program of the night it aired this December. Indeed, its 8.9 million viewers more than doubled what shows like 30 Rock and The Office turn in week after week.

Jason Merritt/Getty

Chuck Norris

Chuck Norris invented the moment of Chuck.