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CNN: Senators "Shocked About How Ill-Prepared" Hagel Was

DANA BASH, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right. They actually took a break for an hour and during that break, senators were on the floor voting and as senators like to do, they were gossiping a lot on the Senate floor.

I talked to many of them and what they were saying is that it was all the buzz on the floor, that they were very surprised that Senator Hagel, from their point of view, many people, Democrats and Republicans, is simply not doing as well as many people thought he would.

In fact, one senator told me that it is all the talk, I mean, all the talk that the senators are shocked about how ill-prepared he is on some of the most basic controversial comments that he made that he and everyone knew were going to be coming at him from the likes of Senator John McCain and Lindsey Graham and others.

Even a Democrat who is on this committee who I spoke to who is supporting Hagel sort of shaking his head in disbelief saying he's surprised that he's not more forceful. And another undecided senator on this committee said that he had three different ways to answer the question on the surge, that he simply got into it on with John McCain.

So simply put, there is, as I said, disbelief, primarily not just because as Jessica reported he had three murder board to prepare for this, but because he has been on the other side of the dais. He knows how this works and so that's why there's a lot of people who were perplexed here. The obvious next question, Wolf, is what will that mean for his confirmation?

Because those senators gossiping on the floor, they hold his fate in their hands. The answer is unclear. There are still a number of undecided Republicans, most importantly, and if somebody actually does block this filibuster, five Republicans are going to have to join Democrats, assuming they all vote for him. (The Situation Room, January 31, 2013)

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