McCain To Block Nomination

July 18, 2013

Arizona Senator John McCain said he will block Army General Martin Dempsey's nomination for a second term as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. McCain said he is not satisfied with Dempsey’s responses to questions about the potential use of U.S. military power in Syria.

"You testified this February you had advised the president to arm vetted units of the Syrian opposition. In April, you testified you no longer supported the position," McCain said. "Now we read in published reports that the administration has decided to arm the Syrian opposition units. How do we account for those pirouettes?"

"I wouldn’t accept the term pirouettes, sir. I would accept the term that we have adapted our approach based on what we know of the opposition," Dempsey replied.

After Thursday's hearing McCain said he planned to put a hold on the nomination, essentially blocking any further Senate action until he gets an adequate response from Dempsey.

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