Hagel Nomination Clears Filibuster
Senate will vote to confirm in a matter of hours
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Feb 26, 2013 11:56 AM CST
In this Jan. 31, 2013, file photo, Secretary of Defense nominee Chuck Hagel testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee during his confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, file)

(Newser) – The Senate has voted 71-27 to end debate on Chuck Hagel's nomination for secretary of Defense, paving the way for his all-but-guaranteed confirmation later this afternoon. Republicans had been filibustering Hagel's nomination, with the last vote to end debate on Feb. 14 falling just short of the 60-vote threshold needed, at 58-40.

This time 11 senators changed their vote—including, notably, John McCain, Roll Call reports. (Hagel and McCain have had something of a rocky relationship, though McCain has always seemed resigned to confirming him.) The Senate will hold its final vote on Hagel around 4:30pm, and when that happens he'll need only a simple majority to be installed atop the Pentagon.

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Feb 26, 2013 2:20 PM CST
Nero only fiddled while Rome burned
Feb 26, 2013 2:16 PM CST
..., brought to you live from the nation, which claims to be a super-power ...
Feb 26, 2013 2:00 PM CST
GOP: The party of "NO!" They filibustered over 380 bills in Mr. O's first term, some of which they wrote or sponsored themselves. Now they attempt to do the same to a Republican nominee.