Despite his months-long hold on military nominations and promotions, U.S. Senator Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) called for a floor vote on Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley’s replacement (Milley’s term ends on September 30). Tuberville claims if the Senate doesn’t vote on General Brown’s nomination before the end of the month, it is “entirely the fault of the Democratic majority that runs this floor.”
In May, Air Force General Charles “C.Q.” Brown, Jr. was formally announced as President Joe Biden‘s nominee to succeed Milley as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. Brown has publicly criticized Tuberville’s block of military promotions, saying the military “will lose talent.”
[Note: Since the beginning of 2023, Tuberville has blocked military nominations and promotions because he disapproves of the Defense Department’s abortion-related policies, notably the reimbursement of costs to service members who travel for a procedure.]
As seen and heard in the video below from the Senate floor, the former college football coach Tuberville reminds his colleagues, “I had a 40 year career before I came here. I didn’t need this job but I wanted to help my country.” He added, “I came here to make laws.”
But Army veteran and U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth says Tuberville is instead trying “to influence policy through extortion, rather than legislation,” and suggests that Tuberville is “a lawmaker that doesn’t know the law (which) is a recipe for disaster.”
Duckworth backs up her claim by pointing out Tuberville’s suggestion that General Milley “stay put” if Brown isn’t confirmed by vote before the deadline. However, statutorily, Milley is unable to stay beyond that date. Tuberville reportedly replied to the news with surprise, “He has to leave?”
A lawmaker who doesn’t know the law is a recipe for disaster. pic.twitter.com/90CuqzOupQ— Tammy Duckworth (@SenDuckworth) September 12, 2023
The Joint Chiefs vice chair (Admiral Christopher W. Grady) will step in if General Brown is not confirmed or before October 1.