'Craziness': Senate Democrat lambastes 'maniac' Tuberville’s military appointment blockade
United States Senator Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) exploded at Senator Tommy Tuberville (R-Alabama) on Wednesday for blockading critical military appointments and promotions because he personally disagrees with the Pentagon's inclusion of reimbursement for abortion expenses in servicemembers' healthcare policies.
"The idea that we should sit here and burn up post-cloture time and turn the Senate into the personnel committee for the Department of Defense is antithetical to the idea of advice and consent," Schatz began.
"And yes, every senator has enormous power. I could probably block the defense bill this week if I wanted to, but I won't. You know why? Because I'm not a maniac. Because I understand that when you vest someone through your voters with this kind of power, you have to be very careful how you exercise it," Schatz said.
"And so in my eleven-odd years, I've blocked one or two things, and when I block something, people know I'm serious and I have never — and I have known no one the current a hundred senators besides Senator Tuberville and no one else before him — I've never seen this in my life," Schatz continued.
"This is a breaking of the Department of Defense, and this is a breaking of the basic understanding that, hey, we're gonna vest each other with the kind of authority that is pretty enormous, right? But in exchange, you have to use that power wisely. In exchange, you have to use that power wisely. And Senator Tuberville is mad about an abortion issue, and so he's preventing all of these general and flag officers from getting their promotions. It's bad for morale. It's bad for the chain of command," Schatz explained.
"It's also bad for these individual families. You've got people who have to make basic choices. Real estate decisions: 'Am I renting a condo or not? Where am I living? I'm not even sure where should I enroll my kids in school? I don't know. And my whole life depends on when Senator Tuberville decides that this craziness is over,'" Schatz added. "It's got to end. It's bad for the country, it's bad for the Senate, and it's bad for the United States Armed Forces."
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