FILE - In this March 9, 1989, file photo, John Tower poses after reading a statement at the Pentagon in Washington, after the Senate voted 53-47 to reject his nomination as secretary of

 

              FILE - In this March 9, 1989, file photo, John Tower poses after reading a statement at the Pentagon in Washington, after the Senate voted 53-47 to reject his nomination as secretary of
FILE - In this March 9, 1989, file photo, John Tower poses after reading a statement at the Pentagon in Washington, after the Senate voted 53-47 to reject his nomination as secretary of defense in Washington. "It is a time for bitterness, rancor and anger to fade; and for those elements of government who have been involved in the confirmation process to unite and to be about the people's business," Tower said. In 1989, former President Richard Nixon said unless a nominee is clearly unqualified, the Senate should respect the right of a president to fill his Cabinet. Nixon’s words came during the bitter fight over President George H.W. Bush’s choice of Tower for the Pentagon post. The Democratic-led Senate rejected him. Now, President Barack Obama’s choice of Republican Chuck Hagel to be defense secretary will be a test for Senate Republicans, including those who fought strenuously for Tower. (AP Photo/Dennis Cook, File)