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The support for Hagel was offered by former Sens. John Warner (R-Va.) and Sam Nunn (D-Ga.), both onetime Armed Services Committee chairmen. The cheap shot slander of war hero Hagel was offered by Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzDebbie Wasserman Schultz marks 10 years as breast cancer survivor Foreign agent registration is no magical shield against Russian propaganda Let Trump be Trump and he'll sail through 2020 MORE (R-Texas), whose service in the Senate is measured in days, not decades, and who was properly reprimanded directly by Sen. Bill NelsonClarence (Bill) William NelsonOvernight Health Care: Ryan's office warns he wasn't part of ObamaCare deal | House conservatives push for mandate repeal in final tax bill | Dem wants probe into CVS-Aetna merger Ryan's office warning he wasn't part of deal on ObamaCare: source Overnight Health Care: Funding bill could provide help for children's health program | Questions for CVS-Aetna deal | Collins doubles funding ask for ObamaCare bill MORE (D-Fla.) and indirectly by Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainGOP strategist donates to Alabama Democrat Meghan McCain knocks Bannon: 'Who the hell are you' to criticize Romney? Dems demand Tillerson end State hiring freeze, consult with Congress MORE (R-Ariz.), who vouched for the intense patriotism of Hagel. 

The Senate Armed Services Committee has a long and proud tradition of bipartisan statesmanship that was violated by the Tea Party freshman senator who tried to smear a war hero who not only served his country with courage but also has battled for veterans and military families in Texas and nationally for a generation. 

Nationally, the shameful performance by Cruz, who acted like Joe McCarthy in short pants with his insults of war hero Hagel, illustrates why Republicans keep losing elections, why the Republican and Tea Party brands are in such disrepute, and why the so-called Republican reboot (which I have called the Republican retoot) is still not close to credible.

In Texas, veteran voters know that Hagel is enthusiastically supported by the American Legion, the Veterans of Foreign Wars and groups speaking for veterans of Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan. Presumably while Hagel was battling as a decorated war hero and fighting for all living veterans, Cruz was being cheered at Tea Party seminars and eating popcorn at war movies. 

Cruz's performance at Armed Services was disgraceful and appalling.  He violated the proud tradition of a great bipartisan committee and did no service to the countless veterans and war heroes of Texas and the nation who know that Hagel is a great friend and member of the band of brothers and sisters  who serve Texas and America with valor.