WASHINGTON (CBS) -- The President is expected to announce his nominations for his next CIA director and Defense Secretary. But one of his choices could lead to a fight in the Senate.
President Obama is back at the White House and ready to name his second-term national security team.
The White House says the President will nominate John Brennan for CIA director and former Republican Senator Chuck Hagel to replace retiring Defense Secretary Leon Panetta. David Berteau with the Centers for Strategic and International Studies says, "He is a former soldier, he was wounded in combat, he relates to the military in a way that's important for the secretary of defense."
But Members of Hagel's own party are already criticizing the pick. Newly elected Arkansas Republican Rep. Tom Cotton said on ABC This Week, "I'm disappointed the president has nominated Hagel and I urge the senate to oppose the nomination."
Hagel upset Republicans when he supported talks with Syria and Iran. He also said Israel should negotiate directly with Hamas which the U.S. considers a terrorist group. Sen. Lindsay Graham said on CNN's Situation Room, "This is an in your face nomination by the president."
The President has considered Hagel an ally since his days in the Senate. The President is also close to John Brennan, who currently serves as his counterterrorism adviser.
Brennan would replace David Petraeus who resigned the top job at the CIA after admitting to an affair. Berteau says, "He's demonstrated his commitment to and support of the president's programs and policies."
Four years ago the President also considered Brennan, a long time CIA veteran, to lead the agency. But some democrats questioned his involvement with enhanced interrogation techniques during the Bush administration.
Brennan denied the allegations but still pulled his name from consideration.
President Obama needs the Senate's approval for his picks. He nominated Senator John Kerry for Secretary of State after lawmakers criticized UN ambassador Susan Rice as a possible choice.