U.S. Army to lose confirmed leader amid Tuberville’s blockade

August 4, 2023

Do you strongly agree, somewhat agree, somewhat disagree or strongly disagree with Sen. Tuberville's blocking of military appointments in protest of the government’s funding of travel costs for abortions for service members and their dependents?

The U.S. Army as of Friday will be without a Senate-confirmed leader as Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) continues to block military nominations.

Retiring Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville is relinquishing command. His retirement follows that of the U.S. Marine Corp Commandant Gen. David Berger, whose replacement has also been blocked, leaving the U.S. Military for the first time in its history with two branches lacking a confirmed leader.

Tuberville has been continuously blocking military promotions in protest of the government’s funding to cover travel costs for abortions for service members and their dependents. More than 260 nominations have been held up so far this year, and that number could potentially reach 650 by the end of December.

One Senator on the Armed Services Committee—in this case, Tuberville—is able to hold up potentially countless military promotions through a Senate procedure called “unanimous consent.”

In late July a group of Senate Democrats wrote to Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) urging him to exercise his authority to “prevail” upon Tuberville to end his block of military promotions. 

Though McConnell once quipped that the Senate “requires unanimous consent to turn the lights on before noon,” he has so far resisted calling Tuberville to account.

“I think holding the military personnel who have nothing to do with policy in order to try to dictate a policy change that I personally support is not the best way to go about it,” McConnell said in mid-July. “But as you can see…[Tuberville] has a different point of view.”

This week Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin issued guidance to the military workforce on reshuffling key military roles in the wake of Tuberville’s hold. They include assigning certain lower-level officers to lead in an acting capacity.

“Great teams need great leaders,” Austin said amid the loss of the Army Chief of Staff, adding, “”In our dangerous world of security, the United States demands orderly and prompt transitions of our confirmed military leaders.”

“Great teams need great leaders,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin amid the loss of the Army Chief of Staff, adding, “”In our dangerous world of security, the United States demands orderly and prompt transitions of our confirmed military leaders.”

Read more exclusive news from Political IQ.

Related

Newsletter

Get the featured stories in your email and don't miss out on important news.

Previous

Women In Draft Proposal Ignites Debate

Next

Women In Draft Proposal Ignites Debate