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Over 12,000, Including More Than 8,000 Veterans and Military Families Stand Up for Chuck Hagel

 ·, Press Release   ·   Link to Article

In petition to President Obama, Veterans and Military Families urge him to stand up to right-wing swiftboating

WASHINGTON, DC - In a petition led by the largest progressive group of Veterans in America,, over 8000 Veterans and Military Families are standing up for former Senator Chuck Hagel, and urging President Obama to stand up to right-wing swiftboating of him, as he considers his nomination for the next Secretary of Defense.  The group launched the petition on Friday of last week, and quickly gained the signatures.  Over 12,000 people signed, overall.

"One thing is clear - those who have experience with the military and war support Chuck Hagel, while chicken-hawk neocons do not," said Jon Soltz, Iraq War Veteran and Chairman of  "That should make it perfectly clear to President Obama as to why neocons are launching their smear campaign, just hoping that the President is scared off from nominating Senator Hagel.  Senator Hagel would represent an era of pro-troop responsibility at the Pentagon, and nothing is more abhorrent to neocons than that."

The petition that Veterans and Military Families signed reads as follows:

"President Obama 

We, the undersigned, strongly reject the neocon smears being launched against Vietnam Veteran and former Senator Chuck Hagel. We will strongly back his nomination for Secretary of Defense, should you choose to nominate him. In fact, we urge you to not be deterred from nominating him, simply because of the right-wing noise machine. 

The reason they're swiftboating Senator Hagel is clear. Chuck Hagel, as a Vietnam Veteran, would put troops first. He has a record of challenging neocon dreams of preemptive use of force - and winning that debate. He has a record of challenging wasteful Pentagon spending, taking on the military-industrial complex, to ensure our defense dollars are responsibly spent on equipment we actually need. As Defense Secretary, he would do the same, and thoroughly embarrass and expose Kristol and his neocon buddies. 

It would be unfortunate for our Troops and our nation if we allowed neocons to rob us of a potentially great Secretary of Defense. We urge you to not give in to them."


Founded in 2006,  and backed by over 220,000 members, the mission of is to use public issue campaigns and direct outreach to lawmakers to ensure that troops abroad have what they need to complete their missions, and receive the care they deserve when they get home. also recognizes veterans as a vital part of the fabric of our country and will work to protect veterans' interests in their day-to-day lives. is committed to the destruction of terror networks around the world - with force when necessary - to protect America.  While non-partisan, the group is the largest progressive organization of veterans in America.