WASHINGTON – After halting a vote this week on the nomination of Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel in response to 25 Republican senators’ requests for more financial information, Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin, D-Mich., said that the requests ”go far beyond” the committee’s standard – and the vote will be taken "as soon as possible."
The vote could come next week – although it has not been scheduled, a senior staffer in Levin's office said.
Levin said in a statement that he sent a letter Friday to the GOP senators making the requests, outlining the rules and practices for nominees.
The demands "go beyond the standard disclosure regime and would subject Senator Hagel to a different requirement from all previous nominees,” Levin said.
Nominees are required to submit a public financial disclosure report; a completed questionnaire, which asks about future employment relationships, potential conflicts of interest, personal financial data and foreign affiliations; and a formal ethics agreement to avoid any potential conflicts of interest within 90 days after being appointed to the office.
“The committee cannot have two different sets of financial disclosure standards for nominees, one for Senator Hagel and one for other nominees,” Levin said.