Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS) on Tuesday became the first Republican to express his definite support of Secretary of Defense-nominee Chuck Hagel. Cochran, the ranking member on the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, made his stance known yesterday through a spokesman.
Hagel’s nomination came under attack weeks before the official announcement, weathering several rounds of misleading smears. Several Republicans have already expressed their intent to vote against their former colleague, with one threatening to place a hold on his nomination. Despite that, Hagel enjoys bipartisan support from many former military and security officials.