Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) defended his vote for Chuck Hagel this morning on Fox, saying he filibustered the Defense nominee twice “because I wanted more information.”
And he laid the break of that filibuster on his colleagues, even though he was one of just four GOPs to vote to confirm Hagel.
“I think, when Republicans stick together, we can get information. I was disappointed, though, that several on my side, after they filibustered him, immediately announced they weren’t going to continue the filibuster so we never really got the information,” Paul said.
“I’m the same way on Brennan. I want to know more information about drone strikes in America. On final passage, though, I take the position that the president does have some leeway some prerogative in who he appoints to political appointees. So I would like to get as much information as we can.”
John Brennan’s nomination to lead the CIA is scheduled for a vote at the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday afternoon.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), not a member of that committee, has threatened to filibuster Brennan over Benghazi.
“I’ll stick with the party, if the party will stick together to try to get more information,” Paul said. “And, in the end, you know, I voted for John Kerry also, although I agree with almost nothing that John Kerry represents.”
Still, Paul said he’s not sure if Hagel, who was sworn in at the Pentagon this morning, will be a good Defense secretary.
“I think, there are many, sort of, libertarian reasons not to be excited about a guy who voted for the Iraq war, voted for the Patriot Act, is in favor of a national draft. But there is also reasons from a conservative perspective not to be happy,” the senator said.
“I don’t know what will happen. I do think, though, he’s open to the fact that we will have to save some money in the military, and I am open to that also.”