Santorum jumps into Hagel fight

Looks like Rick Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator and GOP presidential candidate, is throwing himself into the battle over Chuck Hagel’s nomination as defense secretary.

Santorum says he will fight the nomination because of Hagel’s record on Israel and Iran.

Hagel’s one-time colleague also draws a parallel to Santorum’s efforts to scuttle the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) treaty.

Santorum has suggested that pact would undermine the rights of parents to home-school their children.

Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, and other supporters of the treaty — including a number of fellow Republicans – have said those concerns are bogus.

Still, Santorum’s anti-treaty campaign seemed to score some hits and the treaty failed to garner enough votes last year when it came to the Senate floor.

Meanwhile, The World-Herald’s Mike Kelly has a column out today touting Hagel’s credentials for the post.

Hagel spoke earlier this week with Sen. Mike Johanns, R-Neb., who says he is withholding judgement on the nomination until Hagel’s confirmation hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee.

A committee spokeswoman says the hearing can’t be scheduled until the Senate is back in session, which won’t be until Jan. 21st.

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