Monday in politics: Hagel and Brennan nominations, Clinton back at work, and more

Phil Pruitt

President Barack Obama will be busy with nominations on Monday. He is expected to nominate former Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel to be the next Secretary of Defense and John Brennan as the next director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

It sounds like Hagel might face a rough confirmation fight.

South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham said Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union" that Hagel would be an "in your face" choice by Obama.

“Chuck Hagel, if confirmed to be the secretary of defense, would be the most antagonistic secretary of defense toward the state of Israel in our nation’s history," Graham said.

And Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said On ABC's "This Week” that he would "wait and see how the hearings go," and see "whether Chuck's views square with the job he would be nominated to do."

[GOP senators hint Hagel’s in for tough confirmation fight]

Brennan, a 25-year CIA veteran, currently serves as Obama's top counterterrorism adviser. Obama considered Brennan for the top CIA job in 2008, but Brennan withdrew his name amid questions about his connection to enhanced interrogation techniques while serving in the spy agency during the George W. Bush administration. Brennan denied involvement in the controversial interrogation tactics.

Obama’s schedule this week also includes a meeting in Washington with Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai. The agenda is certain to include the role of the United States in Afghanistan after 2014. Most international troops are scheduled to leave Afghanistan by the end of 2014.

Also worth noting on Monday: EMILY's List president Stephanie Schriock will speak at the National Press Club on “Democratic Women in 2012: How We Won and Where We Go From Here.”

And then there is this: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will return to work on Monday five days after being released from New York Presbyterian Hospital for treatment of a blood clot.

Sources: Yahoo! News’ The Ticket, Associated Press, Reuters.