Sen. Tommy Tuberville’s (R-Ala.) continuing blockade on military promotions may have drawn the ire of other Senate Republicans, but it’s also earned him the praise of 20 of their House counterparts.
“We write to express our deep gratitude and support for your courageous leadership in the fight to preserve and protect the precious lives of unborn children and their mothers,” the Republican lawmakers wrote in a Nov. 30 letter to the senator.
“Your holds on Department of Defense nominations have brought needed scrutiny to President Biden’s unprecedented and misguided policy to support the abortion industry by paying the transportation costs for military service members and their dependents to travel to obtain elective abortions.”
Upon the Biden administration’s February announcement that the new policy would soon take effect, Mr. Tuberville began blocking the use of unanimous consent to rush the confirmation of Defense Department nominees. And despite increasingly bipartisan criticism, he has persevered in that effort.
End of the RoadWhile Mr. Tuberville’s tactics have made him the target of Democratic criticism all year, in recent weeks, several Republican senators have joined in calls for him to end his protest.
Among them was Sen. Dan Sullivan of Alaska, a colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, who on Nov. 1 joined Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Joni Ernst of Iowa, Todd Young of Indiana, and others in rebuking the Alabama senator.
“Why are we putting holds on war heroes?” Mr. Sullivan asked from the Senate floor. “I don’t understand.”
Mr. Tuberville, for his part, has frequently pointed out that his holds do not prevent the Senate from confirming the nominees but simply draw out the process.
Even so, earlier this week, he reportedly told his frustrated colleagues that he intends to end the standoff soon—a move that likely spurred the letter of support from the House.
The shift in position comes amid the Senate Rules Committee’s approval of a resolution allowing the Senate to confirm hundreds of delayed military promotions and nominations at once.
“I hope my Republican colleagues who care about military preparedness end up supporting this resolution, or at least getting Senator Tuberville to back down.”