There has been a lot of news flying around Senator Hagel and a potential appointment to SecDef, got a few messages about it so wanted to put a quick recap of whats happened.
In 1998, Senator Hagel made this statement about a potential Ambassador Hormel:
“They are representing our lifestyle, our values, our standards and I think that it is an inhibiting factor to be gay — openly, aggressively gay like Mr. Hormel — to do an effective job.”
“My comments 14 years ago in 1998 were insensitive. They do not reflect my views or the totality of my public record, and I apologize to Ambassador Hormel and any LGBT Americans who may question my commitment to their civil rights. I am fully supportive of ‘open service’ and committed to LGBT military families.”
“Senator Hagel’s apology is significant–I can’t remember a time when a potential presidential nominee apologized for anything. While the timing appears self-serving, the words themselves are unequivocal–they are a clear apology. Since 1998, fourteen years have passed, and public attitudes have shifted–perhaps Senator Hagel has progressed with the times, too.”
“We are pleased that Senator Hagel recognized the importance of retracting his previous statement about Ambassador Hormel and affirming his commitment to Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell repeal and LGBT military families. We look forward to learning more about his commitment to full LGBT military equality as this nomination and confirmation process unfolds,” she said.
“Wrong on gay rights, wrong on Iran, wrong on Israel.”
“I cannot think of any other minority group in the U.S. today where such a negative statement and action made in 1998 would not be an obstacle to a major Presidential appointment.”