Anti-Defamation League (ADL) head Abe Foxman responded, saying:
"What I find more troubling is, he had sufficient time to distance himself from the "Jewish lobby' quote, to explain, and he hasn't."
"He let it stand. I find that more troubling than the original statement. He sees it out there. He sees it being seen as this truly conspiratorial view, that the Jewish lobby controls foreign policy, and there's no comment."
AIPAC withheld comment. The National Jewish Democratic Council (NJDC) said:
"While we have expressed concerns in the past, we trust that when confirmed, (Hagel) will follow the president's lead of providing unrivaled support for Israel - on strategic cooperation, missile defense programs, and leading the world against Iran's nuclear program."
On January 8, the right-wing Jerusalem Post headlined "Ayalon: Hagel sees Israel as 'true and natural' ally," saying:
Ayalon is Deputy Israeli Foreign Minister. He's positive on Hagel's nomination. "I have met him many times," he said, "and he certainly regards Israel as a true and natural US ally."
Netanyahu withheld comment. Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin expressed concerns. "Because of his statements in the past, and his stance toward Israel, we are worried," he said.