97 Percent of Armenian Americans Oppose Hoagland Nomination

GLENDALE–Ninety-seven percent of Armenian Americans support opposition to the confirmation of Richard Hoagland as US Ambassador to Armenia, according to a new online poll conducted by the Armenian National Committee of America-Western Region over the past two weeks in nineteen Western US states. This viewpoint is aligned with the policy position of the Armenian National Committee of America, which has been leading and vigorously pursuing this issue in Congress and with the Administration. The 97 percent figure is based on polling conducted between December 28, 2006 and January 8, 2007. Asked, as part of a survey of public policy priorities, about their views on the US Senate’s opposition to Hoagland’s confirmation, 94 percent of the respondents said that they "strongly agreed" with this opposition. An additional three percent noted that they "somewhat agreed" with this opposition. One percent reported that they "somewhat disagreed" with opposing Hoagland, and two percent indicated that they "strongly disagreed" with the opposition to his confirmation. The controversy over the Hoagland nomination, which was most recently covered in a January 7 Los Angeles Times article began with the firing of his predecessor, John Evans, for speaking truthfully about the Armenian Genocide. This firing, for breaching the State Department’s policy of complicity in the Turkish government’s denial of this crime, was compounded by Hoagland’s outright denial of the Genocide in response to questions posed during and after his June 2006 confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Based on growing reservations over the Evans dismissal and, later, Hoagland’s deeply offensive responses, more than half of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee members and over 60 US Representatives formally raised their concerns on this matter with the Administration. Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) moved on September 7, 2006 to place a "hold" on the Hoagland nomination, effectively blocking the nomination. On December 1st of last year the New Jersey legislator joined with incoming Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) in calling on the Administration to offer a new candidate for this post. Complete results of the ANCA-WR Internet poll, including details about Armenian American views about the Armenian Genocide Resolution, will be issued in coming days.

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