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Possible US Defence Secretary nominee: Comments about gays “do not reflect my views”

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  1. You’ve got to appreciate it when people lose their prejudices. So good for Mr. Hagel. But then, it’s not clear that he really has changed his views; he’ll have to say and do a lot more before it stops looking like he’ll say anything to get appointed.

    1. Sister Mary Clarence 22 Dec 2012, 9:12am

      Either way he is now in a position where he feels it necessary to make it clear he doesn’t hold those views any more, and I think that is a huge step forward.

      It is clear that he now identifies that to hold such views as he expressed in 1998 will hamper his career progression, and that it is necessary for him to distance himself from them in order to be successful.

  2. sure, make me a high government official and i’ll say sorry for comments I may have made in 1998….

    are you kidding me ???? why no apology sooner….and definitely lacks sincerity when the person he offended still hasn’t received the apology personally….

    I hope POTUS re-thinks this appointee… sheesh

  3. Why do the HRC suck up to these folks so much. They are not representing the LGBT folk like my partner and I or people we know. They seem to represent the elite LGBT groupings.

  4. The damage has been done. Goodbye and enjoy your retirement

  5. PeterinSydney 22 Dec 2012, 8:13am

    Interesting how people can suddenly reverse their old phobias when they are after a new job. Seems more like a great act of hypocrisy to me.

  6. “aggressively gay”

    What was he a straight basher?

    1. Pinknews is ignoring his actions. He voted against including sexual orientation in hate crimes legislation – twice. And he’s also was known to oppose domestic partnership benefits.

  7. “They do not reflect my views”…
    How many times have we heard that before? If they don’t reflect your views why did you make them in the first place?
    He had a “change of heart”? I doubt it, I think it’s more a realisation that anti-gay animus isn’t in vogue anymore.

  8. Even if he’s changed his opinion now, and it seems he would have had to have travelled a VERY long way from his previous views, nobody will believe him, because he’s apologised at the very moment when it will be seen as purely for political / personal gain.

    How could you trust someone at such a time? Besides, he’s done a lot of damage if he’s been voting against domestic partnerships, been for DADT and against hate-crimes legislation. He can’t undo what he’s done there with a simple sorry.

    He’s unfit to represent the US government in any capacity given his past.

  9. Many people make remarks that, as he calls his, are “insensitive”. His remarks were not simply insensitive, they were aggressively homophobic, bigoted, and slanderous.

    If he were truly remorseful, his apology would have been a private one with Hormel, not a public display faux regret.

    Aside from a potential political appointment, what happened in those intervening fourteen years for this zebra so supposedly change his stripes? Has he been outspoken in a campaign for marriage equality? Is he appalled by the gay teen suicide rate?

    If his comments, as he says “do not reflect my views”, what are his views today?

  10. Mommie Dammit 22 Dec 2012, 1:31pm

    As a former Nebraskan, and as someone well familiar with Chuck Nagel, I can guarantee you his opinions haven’t changed one damned bit. This apology is typical of Nagel, who will say whatever he thinks his audience wants to hear as long as it will further his ambitions. The man is, at the core, an unrepentant bigot, racist, and misogynist. Trusting this man, as Nebraskans found when we were foolish enough to elect him Senator 20 years ago, is to take a viper to your breast. He is a tool of the corporatocracy, and does nothing that doesn’t satisfy his corporate puppetmasters… preferably while lining his own pockets.

  11. Robert in S. Kensington 22 Dec 2012, 1:35pm

    His apology would seem more credible if he’d offered it directly to Mr. Homel, but he didn’t. I’m rather sceptical about this.

    What I don’t understand is why the Democrats keep nominating republicans for national defence? We know they’re the biggest supporters of unlimited spending on the military industrial complex, one of the reasons why the deficit is so high, two unpaid wars for starters which the republicans refused to pay for.

    On the other hand, it could well be a Democratic strategy to force leading republicans to change their attitude towards LGBT equality by reaching out and offering them important positions in the cabinet.

    I’ve no doubt that Hagel did this for political expediency but it’s too late. John Kerry is now going to get the job I think, a democrat.

    1. John Kerry’s been nominated for Secretary of State, to succeed Hillary Clnton; Hagel’s up for Secretary of Defense. And, when it comes right down to it, Hagel’s apology is not credible in the least: his voting record on LGBT-related issues during his Senate career is almost 0 (I think one year he got a 10 — out of a possible 100). I don’t think this is the man we want to be responsible for enforcing open service.

  12. To me he is the stereotypical Archie Bunker type bigot. His policies have been anti gay (even now after his late and self serving apology he doesn’t support equal benefits for gay military families. He is anti-African American (with a 17/100 rating from NAACP and admires Strom Thurmond as a great role model. anti Woman (vs choice and contraception)


    Hagel has drawn additional heat from insiders who claim he lacks the credentials needed to manage a department as large and essential as the Pentagon.

    “Yes, Hagel has crazy positions on several key issues. Yes, Hagel has said things that are borderline anti-Semitism. Yes, Hagel wants to gut the Pentagon’s budget. But above all, he’s not a nice person and he’s bad to his staff,” said a senior Republican Senate aide who has close ties to former Hagel staffers.

    “Hagel was known for turning over staff every few weeks—

  13. Hmmmmm, I’ll take that with a pinch of salt please!

  14. Faced with the dread prospect of the fount of patronage drying up, many politicians will say anything to keep it gushing forth, including that they renounce their former positions.
    Just so long as they realize that the rest of us keep detailed notes of what they say, even when they apparently don’t themselves.

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