Senate Dems Take Crucial Step To Get Around Tuberville’s Holds On Military Promotions

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Micaela Burrow Investigative Reporter, Defense
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Senate Democrats advanced a resolution intended to help the chamber get around Republican Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville’s 8-month blockade on military promotions Tuesday.

The temporary rule change, spearheaded by Democratic Sen. Jack Reed of Rhode Island and Independent Sen. Krysten Sinema of Arizona, would allow the now roughly 450 admirals and generals awaiting confirmation to pass in a single package with just a majority vote. It passed out of committee on a 9-7 party line vote, setting up Republicans to support it in the full senate and tank Tuberville’s effort to oppose the Pentagon’s abortion travel policy, according to Politico.

We just voted to send a resolution to end Senator Tuberville’s obstruction of military promotions to the Senate floor. Hundreds of critical positions are left unfilled and our national security is at risk. Today we made it clear – enough is enough,” Committee chair Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota said in a social media statement.

The measure needs 60 votes to pass the full Senate, so at least nine GOP members will have to support it. (RELATED: Army Chief Says A General Retired Rather Than Wait Out Tuberville Holds)

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has promised to bring the resolution to the floor unless Republicans can come up with a solution on their own, Politico reported.

Many Republicans don’t want to side with pro-abortion advocates or overrule a senator of their own party, knowing that a Democrat could pull a similar stunt, according to Politico.

Earlier in November, GOP senators brought names to the floor individually, forcing Tuberville to shoot down votes on each one. Then they convened an unusual meeting to discuss possible resolutions that would satisfy Tuberville’s opposition to the Pentagon’s paid abortion travel rule but reverse what the Pentagon and most senators are calling a strain on military readiness.

Tuberville said he was considering five or six different options at the time. He has maintained that the Senate should vote on each nomination individually without the unanimous consent requirement.

“I understand the urgency. I’m not just being hard-headed about this. I understand we’ve gotten into some unique problems the last few weeks,” Tuberville said.

Reed called Tuberville’s obstruction of Senate confirmations “dishonorable” at Politico’s defense summit Tuesday.

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