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At the hearing, Hagel had to disavow some of his previous statements he "regretted." For example, Sen. Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeNSA spying program overcomes key Senate hurdle With religious liberty memo, Trump made America free to be faithful again This week: Time running out for Congress to avoid shutdown MORE (R-Utah) brought up Hagel's past comment that Israel kept Palestinians "caged up like animals." He also faced criticism for once commenting that the "Jewish lobby" intimidates figures in Washington.

Hagel could secure the nomination with just Democratic support, so long as no GOP member opted to filibuster the pick.