The Showdown between Military Confirmations and Abortion

Tommy “There’s nobody less racist in this building than me” Tuberville.
As we prepare to delve deeper into the murky waters of election season, we are presented with the lineup of candidates vying for the position of President of the United States. We witness their beliefs, truths, and lies unfold. Additionally, an aspect worth considering (if seen from that perspective) is gaining a broader understanding of the figures within each political party and their stances on various issues. Even if these politicians hail from different states than our own, it remains vital to acquaint ourselves with these individuals who wield considerable power, as they possess the capacity to bring about positive change or plunge us into utter chaos.


While the intention of this post is to highlight the positive aspects, unfortunately, today’s spotlight is on chaos. Senator Thomas Tuberville from Alabama has been a focal point of the news since the early part of this year due to his obstruction of promotions for over 150 military generals and officers. He has done so by objecting to the concept of “unanimous consent,” a procedure that eliminates the need for a formal vote in military confirmations, thereby expediting the process. However, if a single senator opposes “unanimous consent,” it cannot be employed to address matters before the chamber, thereby significantly lengthening the process.
This obstruction is in response to a new policy by the Defense Department that aims to provide travel expenses and paid time off for service members and their dependents seeking abortions. To better understand the reasoning behind Senator Tuberville’s decision, it is important to note that he signed an amicus brief advocating for the overturning of Roe v. Wade, aiming to eliminate federal protection for abortion. He also voted against the Respect for Marriage Act, despite its passage and subsequent enactment. Furthermore, he has endorsed multiple bills seeking to impose restrictions on transgender individuals.
It’s worth highlighting that Alabama possesses some of the most stringent abortion laws in the US. Proposed bills even contemplate criminal charges against individuals seeking abortion. Thus, the interconnectedness of Senator Tuberville’s decision should come as no surprise. However, it yields unintended consequences. For instance, his actions have resulted in the obstruction of the confirmation of a new Marine Corps Commandant, marking the first instance in 100 years where the Marine Corps lacks a leader.
Regardless of one’s stance on the level of militarization in the country, the absence of leaders within significant military branches such as the Marine Corps presents a clear danger. This situation potentially forces multiple officers to undertake numerous roles simultaneously. Just as any job that demands excessive responsibilities can lead to burnout and structural issues, this holds true on a larger scale. The primary catalyst behind this scenario lies in the institution’s objective to provide fundamental healthcare and reproductive care to those under its employ.

The Crux of the Matter

Since the overturning of Roe v. Wade (and even prior), pro-life advocates have maintained that they are safeguarding both the lives of mothers and children. Despite the seeming simplicity of this argument, it’s the complex interplay of reproductive health, rights, and justice that many are currently perceiving.
From decisions regarding college admissions to the current scenario involving military nominations, the choice to eliminate federal safeguards for abortion was never as straightforward or localized as it may have initially appeared. Even in the case of Senator Tuberville, both parties are expressing criticism. This is because the military, and specifically the promotion of officers, has historically been an issue that rarely resulted in the type of partisan conflicts we commonly witness. However, given the senator’s stance in a state pursuing criminal prosecution for abortion, it’s hardly surprising that such an event has unfolded.