Former Sen. Chuck HagelCharles (Chuck) Timothy HagelOvernight Defense: Latest on historic Korea summit | Trump says 'many people' interested in VA job | Pompeo thinks Trump likely to leave Iran deal Should Mike Pompeo be confirmed? Intel chief: Federal debt poses 'dire threat' to national security MORE (R-Neb.) said President Obama and Republican legislators are now sitting in a political environment that's more conducive to dealmaking, compared to previous years.

"I think the environment and the climate is totally different today, going into next year, politically, than it was a year ago, two years ago, four years ago," Hagel, now the chairman of the Atlantic Council, said in an interview with the BBC. "I think the environment is going to dictate a lot of how much latitude both sides have in giving a little bit. First, you've got the American people fed up with Congress, fed up with politics and they want our leaders to bring some consensus to solving problems.

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"I think also because Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaOn North Korea, give Trump some credit The mainstream media — the lap dogs of the deep state and propaganda arm of the left The Hill's 12:30 Report — Sponsored by Delta Air Lines — Frenzy over Kennedy retirement rumors | Trump challenges DOJ MORE will not stand for an election again —at least he says he won't— that takes the political tension out of this to some extent. There's always political tension and that's good, but that gives him more latitude, Republicans more latitude to finding a solution."

Hagel's comments come at the end of a week in which Obama and House Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerFreedom Caucus bruised but unbowed in GOP primary fights GOP revolts multiply against retiring Ryan Can Jim Jordan become top House Republican? MORE (R-Ohio) signaled an openness to swiftly compromising on a deficit-reduction plan. If legislators do not come to an agreement on a reduction plan before the end of the year, automatic spending cuts and tax rate increases take place at the beginning of 2013. 

Obama and BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerFreedom Caucus bruised but unbowed in GOP primary fights GOP revolts multiply against retiring Ryan Can Jim Jordan become top House Republican? MORE have also said they hope to pass comprehensive immigration reform soon.