Obama: Defense Secretary Hagel Is Out

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Secretary Hagel

President Obama has announced the resignation of Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel.

Observers believe the president and Hagel didn't see eye-to-eye on the strategy to combat ISIS. Hagel became defense Secretary about two years ago and was brought in to wind-down U.S. deployment overseas. But the escalation of conflict in Iraq and Syria had seen ramped up U.S. military operations in that region.

"When it’s mattered most behind closed doors, in the Oval Office, you’ve always given it to me straight. For that, I will always be grateful," Obama said, referring to Hagel today.

In a statement, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) praised Hagel for his service while noting the differences she too had with him. "While I did not agree with Secretary Hagel on a number of issues, I deeply appreciate his service to our country and his dedication to our men and women in uniform. I look forward to working with his successor on issues where we must do better such as ending the scourge of sexual assaults in our military, integrating women into combat roles and finally getting our troops home from Afghanistan," Gillibrand said.

Hagel was the only Republican on President Obama's cabinet.

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