WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) released the following statement in advance of a vote scheduled in the Senate today to confirm former Senator Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense:

Senator Hagel has consistently impressed me with his intellect and the depth and breadth of his experience. He served our country with distinction and is a decorated veteran of the Vietnam War. As the first Defense Secretary to have served only in the enlisted ranks, Senator Hagel has learned the hard lessons of war firsthand. As a U.S. Senator, he took a courageous stand against a war that he didn’t believe in, and as we repair the damage done to this nation by ten years of war, we need a Defense Secretary who views foreign engagements with a realistic eye and without rose-colored glasses. His experience at the Veterans Administration will also prove incredibly valuable to the tens of thousands of men and women returning from overseas deployments.

I’ve spoken with Senator Hagel personally about my concerns regarding the increasing amount of defense spending on overseas defense manufacturers, and he shares those concerns. He’s committed to working with me on this issue, and I’ll be proud to cast my vote to confirm him today.