Senator Tom Cotton, R-Ark., Accused one of President Biden’s best candidates at the Pentagon of having a “long record of explosive outbursts” and said he would oppose the nomination during a hearing by the Armed Forces Committee. Senate on Thursday.
Colin Cal, a former Obama adviser, is Biden’s elected deputy secretary of defense for politics.
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Cotton accused Cal of making mistakes in Middle Eastern politics over the past four years before questioning some of his social media posts about former President Donald Trump and Republicans.
“When Middle Eastern policy was your job at the Pentagon, you failed to anticipate the rise of ISIL, which started a real war involving 30,000 Islamic insurgents capturing a quarter of Iraq,”
Cotton also challenged some of Cal’s posts on social media, arguing that they showed he was unfit to serve in the administration.
“In 2019, in response to a story about Syria, you wrote that the Republican Party has humiliated itself in front of Trump’s altar and is now the party of ethnic cleansing,” Cotton said. “The job you are looking for requires sensible, restrained behavior. Every day you will face disagreements in the Pentagon, through the executive branch, with Congress. But your long record of volatile outbursts will have a toxic and detrimental effect on your relationship with Congress.”
Cal admitted to using language that was “sometimes disrespectful” and apologized.
“There were a number of positions that President Trump took that I strongly opposed. I think the language I used to oppose them was sometimes disrespectful, and I apologize for that,” Cal said. “I understand that the position of the Undersecretary of Defense for Politics, although a political appointment, is not a political matter.”
Cotton is not soothed.
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“If this is the way you react to ordinary political differences when you sit at home and read the news, I don’t think you’re fit to sit in the Pentagon and make life and death decisions. That’s one of the reasons why opposes your nomination, “he said.