As part of their overall vice presidential "vetting" process, operatives for Barack Obama are making the rounds on Capitol Hill assessing potential Democratic support for Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel as Obama's running mate. But so far, the reaction hasn't been very positive.
Hagel, a Vietnam War veteran, has won the admiration of some dovish Democrats because of his strong opposition to the Iraq war. And his addition to the ticket would represent the kind of outreach and bipartisanship that Obama is emphasizing in his campaign.
But as Obama operatives have sounded out Democrats about Hagel, they have encountered serious resistance from many who say the Nebraska Republican is too conservative on other issues, especially abortion. As a result, some Democratic insiders say Hagel's prospects are plummeting.
—Kenneth T. Walsh