Oklahoma Sen. Jim Inhofe poised to take top GOP spot on Senate Armed Services Committee
Inhofe, a defense hawk, may give up his ranking spot on environmental committee and become the top Republican on panel that oversees the nation's military policy.
The chairman of the committee is Michigan Sen. Carl Levin, a Democrat. Inhofe praised Levin on Wednesday.
“He has always been exceptionally fair,” Inhofe said. “He genuinely wants to advance our systems and put us in a superior position.”
Inhofe, who will turn 78 on Saturday, is a regular visitor to Oklahoma's military bases and has traveled to numerous bases across the country and around the world. He visited Iraq 10 times after the 2003 invasion and has gone to Afghanistan 11 times since the U.S. has been at war there.
His interest in Africa has led him to push for more military involvement on that continent.
Inhofe has frequently charged President Barack Obama with seeking to gut defense spending and said Wednesday that one of his main goals would be to protect the Pentagon budget.