Just when conservatives seem bereft of heroes, Senator Tommy Tuberville of Alabama comes along. He’s doing something that Washington just hates, taking a principled stand in support of a principled position that’s more than just a mere pose. He’s actually imposing a cost on liberal posturing, and it’s driving not only the Democrats but some establishment Republicans up the wall. We should back his play and help the Coach bring it in for the big win.
Basically, Senator Tuberville simply refuses to play ball. What happened is that Biden’s puppet masters – Biden makes no decisions himself beyond choosing between watching “Matlock” and “Murder, She Wrote” reruns – told its bemedaled lackeys at the Pentagon to start subsidizing abortion tourism. It’s an unlawful expenditure, but it’s really, really important to the administration that every part of the government be all in on killing babies, including the part of the government that should be all in on killing our enemies but is now mostly concerned with talking about white rage, forcing people to take vaccines they don’t need, and facilitating drag queen story hours. Senator Tuberville asked the Pentagon to stop doing this illegal thing. The Pentagon refused. So Senator Tuberville refused to agree to unanimous consent to pass, en masse, senior military promotions.
Understand what Senator Tuberville did and didn’t do because – shocker – the regime media is lying to you. He didn’t stop military promotions. Certain senior military leaders have to be confirmed by the Senate. Chuck Schumer is free to consider each and every military promotion on its own merits before the entire Senate and force the Senate to vote on it on the record. The problem for the Senate is that this takes time, although it’s unclear what else the Senate has been doing lately that is more important. The Senate works on unanimous consent. Most things just sort of happen because no senator objects, and very few things happen on the record. What Senator Tuberville is doing is gumming up the works. He’s making Chuck Schumer actually put these names in front of the body and take a vote. They have done so for several promotions. But this takes a lot of time. Usually, what happens is the Pentagon presents a promotion list, and the Senate approves it, and everybody gets a star or an eagle. I was on the colonel’s list, with my name buried among 1500 or so aspiring full birds, which was lucky for me because if somebody had googled my name, I’m sure some communist senator would have objected.
But that’s kind of the point. Our elected representatives should be able to object to a senior military promotion. Otherwise, why bother having them confirmed by the Senate at all? The norm of mass promotions is a matter of convenience and courtesy, but the Pentagon isn’t being convenient or courteous. It’s violating the law. The Senate said not to do this kind of abortion spending, and the military saluted with its left hand and middle finger. Senator Tuberville, who seems to understand the chain of command better than the guys who live in the chain of command, refuses to tolerate this kind of insubordination, and why should he?
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His stand is making the Democrats freak out, and it’s also making a bunch of Republicans freak out. Last week, Mitch McConnell had a couple of senators go on the floor, including military vets like the usually sensible Dan Sullivan and Joni Ernst, screaming at Senator Tuberville because he refuses to cooperate. But Senator Tuberville ignored this bipartisan baloney. He’s not folding, and there’s nothing establishment Republicans hate more than a Republican who shames them for refusing to play his assigned part in the DC kabuki theater of GOP-managed failure.
As this standoff has gone on over the last few months, something else has been clear. Many of the guys they’re putting up as generals and admirals are DEI-loving weirdos. For example, there is one Air Force guy who says that the big problem with our military is white colonels. Well, I was a white colonel, and I kind of find it insulting that my 27 years of service has been reduced to the skin tone I bear that resulted from having ancestors immigrating from Germany and Scotland centuries ago. Sure, I was no war hero like Senator Da Nang Dick Blumenthal, whose name the descendants of the Vietcong use to scare their children, but I kind of think an officer who believes this kind of nonsense should find another line of work. He would probably be more comfortable working at, say, a prestigious university’s DEI department explaining why Jewish students should apologize for existing.
Now, there are good, solid Republicans who mean well and are very upset about it. These are people who love our military and love our troops, and they believe the claim that Senator Tuberville is hurting military readiness. But he is not. He is helping it. As my pal Jesse Kelly, a Marine, correctly observed, holding up these promotions is a terrible idea. We should cashier most of these generals and colonels entirely. It is important to remember that we have not unequivocally won a major war in 30 years. My Republican friends who are concerned about Senator Tuberville’s stubbornness interfering with the bureaucracy’s ability to churn out ever more of these half-steppers make the same mistake Donald Trump made – being impressed by our current senior military leadership. Sadly, our current senior military leadership is largely unimpressive, unaccomplished, and totally unsatisfactory. Patriotism and support for our troops require that we acknowledge this fact and act accordingly.
What is required now is not less scrutiny and supervision of military promotions. It is exponentially more of both. Our current military is a disaster. It is run by incompetents who suck up to our civilian authorities not in the proper way – that is, by following the strategy of elected civilian leaders – but by accepting the tropes and tenets of Democratic culture war obsessions. Nothing has done more damage to our military than buying into wokeness. The military leadership won’t admit it because it is either stupid or lying to you. Still, the simple fact is that the normal Americans who traditionally make up our fighting forces are largely refusing to serve any longer because they understand that the military, as an organization and culture, absolutely hates them. Colonel Hate Whitey is not an anomaly. He is a role model.
The effect on recruiting has been just what you would expect. Vets, who typically inspire the majority of recruits, are disgusted and tell young people to pass on a hitch. Why would you give your life to an organization that holds you in contempt because of where your ancestors came from? Moreover, why would you place your lives in the hands of people who have exhibited the kind of gross incompetence that got 13 Americans slaughtered in Afghanistan in that disgraceful rout? I had the honor of briefly serving as a lawyer for the family of one of the Marines killed, and it’s hard to express the betrayal they justifiably feel. No one has been fired for that fiasco. Moreover, I stood there while a representative of the military either, at worst, outright lied to the families or, at best, gave them information that subsequent public disclosures have contradicted. Disgraceful.
What my Republican friends concerned about the promotions slow-walk need to understand is that it is not affecting military readiness. A brigadier general will do just fine holding a major general’s slot. That extra star just means a few extra bucks. If it’s so dangerous, the Pentagon can resolve it in a second – just stop funding abortion tourism. But it won’t, meaning either that the people behind it are abortion fanatics (plausible), or that this is not really a military readiness issue, no matter how often the Pentagon falsely claims it is. And it is not. What it is is a discipline issue. The Pentagon cannot go on violating the law in the face of the American people’s representatives and be treated as if it is doing nothing wrong.
Nor can the Senate allow this disrespect. Unanimous consent in the Senate is a function of collegiality practiced during normal times. But it is not a normal time when the Senate passes blatantly ignored laws. The Senate must stand up for its prerogatives. Tommy Tuberville has. He is a hero. He deserves our support, and those Republicans who question him need to dig deeper into the issue. I don’t think they are bad. I think they are misguided. This kind of flagrant disregard for the institution cannot be tolerated. The solution is very simple. If they want to play by the unanimous consent rules for the benefit of the Pentagon, the Pentagon needs to play by the rules, too. There’s no situation where the Pentagon gets to flip the bird and get collegiality benefits.
Regardless, the Senate shouldn’t be doing mass promotions of very senior officers in the first place. They need to be vetted closely, questioned harshly, and often rejected as totally inadequate for the job at hand. Our national security is more important than the convenience of bureaucrats and the ability of the Senate to take extended vacations. United States Senate, do your job: Coach Tuberville, more power to you.
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