Senate Panel Approves Carter's Nomination As Defense Chief : The Two-Way In a vote that sends his nomination to the full Senate, the Senate Armed Services Committee approved Ashton Carter's bid to be the next secretary of defense Tuesday.

Senate Panel Approves Carter's Nomination As Defense Chief

Ashton Carter, President Obama's nominee to be the next secretary of defense, talks with Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., right, during a break in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee last week. The panel approved Carter's nomination Tuesday. J. Scott Applewhite/AP hide caption

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J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Ashton Carter, President Obama's nominee to be the next secretary of defense, talks with Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., right, during a break in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee last week. The panel approved Carter's nomination Tuesday.

J. Scott Applewhite/AP

In a vote that sends his nomination to the full Senate, the Senate Armed Services Committee approved Ashton Carter's bid to be the next secretary of defense Tuesday. Carter had strong support in the vote, with 25 members voting in favor.

"Hopefully, we can get a vote perhaps even as early as tomorrow" on the floor of the Senate for Carter's confirmation, said Sen. John McCain, who chairs the panel.

Several members of the committee who weren't present voted by proxy. Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska, did not provide instructions on his vote to his fellow members. The vote was officially kept open, meaning that Sullivan could enter his vote later.