The GOP Tips Its Hand

9:45 — Sen. James Inhofe, the new ranking Republican on the Armed Services Committee, has already penned a Washington Post op-ed which surprised no one by announcing that he’d vote against Hagel. Still, his opening remarks were interesting because they outlined the talking points other GOP senators will use when they go after Hagel. The main ones: Hagel has been out of step with both parties when it comes to Iran and Israel, he’s tried to hide his true views for political expediency, and he’s simply too dovish to lead the Pentagon. The key Inhofe line: Hagel subscribes “to a worldview that is predicated on appeasing our allies while shunning our friends.” Ouch.