In response to a handful of Republicans criticizing him over military noninee holds to protest Joe Biden’s illegal abortion funding, pro-lfie Senator Tommy Tuberville said he represents American voters not Rpublicans in Washington.
As LifeNews reported, a small group of moderate Republicans, including members with pro-life voting records, bashed pro-life Senator Tommy Tuberville on Wednesday night. They’re objecting to his holds on military nominees as a response to Joe Biden’s illegal policy making Americans fund abortion travel for members of the military.
But Tuberville is not backing down from standing for life.
“I don’t believe that the White House and the Pentagon can just write a memo and change the law and make an unlawful abortion policy,” Sen. Tommy Tuberville, R-Ala., told Newsmax on Wednesday.
“I like Senator McConnell, but I don’t work for him,” Tuberville said. “I work for the people of Alabama and the taxpayers and citizens of this country.”
Tuberville continued that the Biden administration can’t change the law at whim, which is why he is retaliating, but some even in his own party are fighting him.
“I’m having to fight the Democrats and now having to fight some of my own side, [my] own party. We gotta figure out whether we’re pro-life or not. I think that’s where we need to … have a discussion,” Tuberville stated.
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“We’ve gotta stand up. When things get tough, that’s when you gotta get tougher,” Tuberville said. “[The Biden administration] hadn’t been told ‘no’ in three years. I’ve told them ‘no’ now for nine months … on these holds, and I’m going to stick with it, I’m not changing my mind.”
Instead of ending the abortion funding to allow the 300+ military nominees to be approved by one vote (they can be approved individually but Democrats would rather trash Tuberville than hold multiple votes), Democrats want to change the rules. And Tuberville says Biden would rather trash the Senate than back off his illegal pro-abortion policy.
Tuberville said Biden would rather “burn the Senate down” before negotiating to lift Tuberville’s hold on Senate approval for military promotions en masse.
“It’s typical of this place. This administration would rather burn the Senate down and that’s what would happen. … If you change the rules of the Senate then it lasts forever,” Tuberville said on CNN on Sunday. “So they would rather burn down the Senate than negotiate.”
“If they go around and, without negotiating, change the rules of the Senate it just goes to show you they want it their way or the highway,” Tuberville told CNN.
The pro-life senator also said his hold is not hurting military effectiveness because top positions have temporary people filling them — most of whom would be approved by the Senate anyway.
“If I thought this was happening, I wouldn’t be doing this. And I’ve told you that all along. And the people that I trust tell me that it’s not,” he said.
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Armed Services Committee Chair Jack Reed (D-R.I.) and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I-Ariz.) are behind an effort to change the rules so that would allow most of the 300-plus promotions Tuberville is blocking to be considered on the floor en bloc. Senators currently have the privilege to block votes on matters and their proposal to would be a one year rule change to overturn that priviledge.
But one new report shows that Republicans are opposed to the idea.
But interviews with more than a dozen GOP senators — even those who oppose Tuberville’s moves — revealed a reluctance to support anything that could be seen as setting a new precedent that weakens individual senators’ power.
“The Senate doesn’t just run on rules, it runs on precedents as well,” Sen. Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), the Rules Committee’s top Republican, told us. “This would allow a majority to decide, at any time, that a member’s privileges could be overruled by a one-time exemption. I think that’s dangerous.”
A second report in The Hill confirms Republicans would likely defeat such a targeted rules change.
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Senate Republican Whip John Thune (S.D.) said it will “probably” be a heavy lift to find the nine or 10 Republican votes needed to roll Tuberville.
“There’s a lot of discussion out there around it. We’ll see where that lands,” he said.
No Republican senator has yet expressed public support for the resolution, and those viewed as most likely to vote “yes” say they would prefer to resolve the impasse in another way.
One conservative senator warned there will be an intense political backlash against any GOP senator that votes with Democrats to circumvent Tuberville’s protest of the Pentagon’s policy of paying the travel expenses of service members who take leave to obtain abortions.
“I think that would be a hard vote for senators to take. I don’t know how you can seriously talk about the prerogatives of the institution and defending the rules if you’re willing to go out and kneecap one of your own senators who’s objecting to unanimous consent, which we do all the time,” said the lawmaker.
“It’s one thing that almost all Republican voters agree on — high-propensity [GOP] voters are pro-life,” the senator said. “It’s going to get reported that they’re not supporting Tuberville’s pro-life issue.”
Meanwhile, the Hill quotes Senator Marco Rubio as strongly opposing the idea.
“An effort to get around Tuberville’s hold? No, I think we should vote on them individually. I’m not in favor of every one of those nominees, but there are some that we should move on and he’s open to moving on them individually,” Rubio.
“The point he’s raising with the Pentagon is that they’re violating current law,” Rubio argued, citing the longstanding prohibition on spending federal dollars on abortions.
A new poll shows Alabama voters support their senators’ stand against the radical abortion funding policy.
Polling obtained by the Washington Examiner that was conducted by WPA Intelligence, a conservative polling and data firm, showed 50% of registered Alabama voters have heard “a lot or some” about Tuberville’s hold on military promotions and that 45% of registered voters support his stance, compared to only 33% supporting the Biden administration’s policy.
The poll was conducted between Aug. 23 and 24 and on Aug. 26. It surveyed 500 registered Alabama voters and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.
The new polling showed that Tuberville holds 52% support among registered Alabama voters, compared to Democrats only holding 33% support. It also shows his net favorability rating is at 40% compared to his net unfavorability rating of 36%.
Earlier this month, the Alabama Republican Party Executive Committee passed a resolution condemning President Joe Biden and the Pentagon’s abortion policy and supporting Tuberville’s hold on the military promotions.
“The Alabama Republican Party calls on the Biden administration to reverse the policy of using taxpayer money to fund abortion-related expenses against the will of the people, and thanks Senator Tommy Tuberville for his stand against this flawed policy,” the resolution reads.
When Joe Biden announced the new policy to make Americans fund abortion tourism, Senator Tommy Tuberville made the decision to block all military nominations until the policy was reversed. Instead of reversing the policy, the Biden administration continued forcing Americans to fund abortion.
While Biden and the media claim Tuberville is to blame for the lack of approved military nominees, Democrats could have approved the nominees one at a time. – because all Tuberville is doing is blocking a vote on all of them at the same time. Senate Democrats could bring up the nominations – and approve the two nominees today if they really wanted to do so.
Instead, Democrats closed the Senate for August recess and left town. And the media is trashing Tuberville even though Biden could end the abortion funding policy and Democrats could have voted on nominees for weeks.
“I warned the Pentagon that I would hold their most senior nominees if they broke the law,” Tuberville said in a statement provided to Fox News Digital.
“They did it anyway, and forced my hand. Since then, Chuck Schumer and the Biden administration have refused any serious negotiations, and so this situation has dragged on,” the statement continued.
Tuberville — a retired college football coach — said the hold, which began in February, has given him “more time to look more closely into the background of some these nominees,” which has prompted “deep concerns.”
“I will continue this process of oversight and I will announce my opposition to specific nominees in the weeks ahead,” he said.
Tuberville argues the Pentagon’s abortion policy violates the Hyde Amendment from the 1970s, which restricts the use of federal funds to cover the cost of abortions, except in cases of rape, incest, or when the life of the mother is in danger.
“Coach’s position has not changed,” Tuberville’s office told Fox News Digital on Friday. “The hold will stay on as long as it takes.”
“It ends when the Biden administration stops their illegal use of taxpayer dollars to facilitate abortion. Coach would lift the hold immediately in such a scenario,” it added.
Democrats claim that Tuberville’s actions are hurting the military, but the senator contends that’s not the case.
Tuberville told CNA that if the holdup in promotions was having a negative effect on U.S. military capability, he would be taking a different approach. “If I thought this would affect readiness, I wouldn’t be doing this,” he said. “Readiness is not a problem.”
He cited as an example Gen. Eric Smith, who, though he hasn’t been officially promoted, is currently performing the duties of the Marine Corps commandant in an acting role.
Thousands of veterans recently supported Tuberville in a letter to members of Congress. Here’s more:
In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and GOP Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) signed by thousands of “current and former service members of the United States Military, and organizations which support and advocate for the safety and well-being of our service members” veterans declare that they “firmly support Senator Tuberville’s position of holding civilian, general, and flag officers from confirmation by unanimous consent until the DoD rescinds its recently instituted policy of subsidizing abortion.”
The veterans state in their letter that they “stand united in condemning this policy” implemented by the Biden administration, saying it is “not just illegal, but shamefully politicizes the military, circumvents the authority of Congress, and exceeds the authority of the Department of Defense.”
Addressing some of the incoming Tuberville has faced for his principled stance, the letter shoots down claims that Tuberville’s action has had the effect of “negatively impacting military readiness” by noting the “Department of Defense has failed to present any evidence that substantiates this claim.”
“To the contrary, it appears true that the politicized agenda of Secretary Austin and the Biden administration are significantly diminishing military readiness,” notes the letter. “The American people, include its servicemembers, are disappointed by President Biden and Secretary Austin’s recent decisions to mandate receipt of the COVID-19 vaccines, promote the radical LGBT agenda, and now subsidize abortion.”
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Those policies, the 5,000-plus veterans say, mean that “the military now faces an unprecedented crisis of recruitment – missing its recruitment goal for the first time ever last year.” Instead of catering to Democrat special interests, the veterans say the “focus of our military must be on keeping the American people safe, not advancing the left-wing social agenda.”
In closing, the veterans’ letter reminds that “[t]here is no truth more profound than the fact that all human life is sacred. The mission of the United States Military is to defend and protect all American lives — not subsidize the practice of destroying innocent and vulnerable American children via abortion with taxpayer dollars.”
“By pledging to hold these nominations to the Department of Defense until administration officials reverse course, Senator Tuberville is doing a great service for the American people – including its service members,” the veterans reiterate.
House Republicans successfully added an amendment to a defense spending bill to block the policy. The $886 billion National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2024 passed by a bipartisan vote of 219-210, with four Republicans voting no and four Democrats voting yes. Three Republicans and two Democrats didn’t vote.
The national defense bill now goes to the Senate, where Democrats strongly oppose the pro-life provision. Whether the Senate passes the bill, tries to amend out the pro-life provision or approves its own version remains to be seen.
Unpopular and likely illegal, the Biden policy requires taxpayers to fund travel costs and paid time off for military service members and their families to abort their unborn babies in elective abortions. As a result, Republican leaders estimate 4,100 more unborn babies could be killed in abortions every year.
In response, House Republicans succeeded in passing the Jackson-Roy amendment to the NDAA.
The House voted 221-213 and 222-210 in favor of amendments to the NDAA to ban the Pentagon from paying for expenses related to killing unborn babies and from funding gender transition procedures
“My amendment to stop Biden from using the DOD to pay for abortion travel passed This policy is illegal, and soon, it will be gone. This is a great day for our country,” said pro-life Republican Rep. Ronny Jackson after the vote.
Jackson said that the pro-life amendment “will halt the Biden administration’s illegal and immoral abortion policy” for members of the armed forces and their families.
“Taxpayer funding of travel for an abortion is in fact taxpayer-funded abortion, and this administration has been enacting policies across the government in clear violation of the law,” Jackson said. “The Biden administration has sidestepped existing statute and given the [Defense] Department permission to take this illegal course of action. This has left House Republicans with no choice but to take corrective measures and pass additional legislation.”
Federal law (10 U.S.C. § 1093) has long prevented the Department of Defense (DOD) from using funds to perform elective abortions and prevented the DOD from using its facilities to provide abortions. On October 20, 2022, the Biden Administration’s DOD published a memorandum directing the DOD to pay the travel and transportation costs for military members and dependents who travel to obtain elective abortions.
The federal prohibition against DOD funding of elective abortion clearly extends to funding for any item related to abortion, such as travel and transportation, which has been the case for the entire life of the funding prohibition.
The Jackson Amendment:
Clarifies and explains federal law (10 U.S.C. § 1093) that prevents DOD funding from being used to perform elective abortions and prohibits DOD facilities from being used to provide abortions.
Repeals the October 20, 2022 memorandum.
Amends federal law to clarify that the DOD may not pay for the licensure of healthcare professionals in a state if the purpose is to provide abortions.
“Today the House took a powerful step toward reining in Biden’s illegal policy of taxpayer-funded abortion travel at the Department of Defense,” said SBA Pro-Life America President Marjorie Dannenfelser. “Representatives Jackson and Roy have courageously led the charge to force the administration to follow the four decades old law against taxpayer funding for abortion at the DOD. Now the House must send the Jackson-Roy amendment in the NDAA to the Senate, and then on to the president’s desk. We also applaud Speaker McCarthy, Leader Scalise, Chairman Rogers and Subcommittee Chairman Banks for their work to curtail this administration’s funding for brutal, painful abortions.”
Polls consistently show strong public opposition to taxpayer-funded abortions. A new Marist poll found 60 percent of Americans oppose using tax dollars to fund abortions in the U.S. Additionally, 78 percent oppose using tax dollars to fund abortions in other countries.
Bans on taxpayer funding for elective abortions used to have strong bipartisan support in Congress. Only recently did Democrat leaders abandon the American people on the issue and begin supporting taxpayer funding for elective abortions – a goal of the abortion industry, which spends huge amounts of money on elections.