The U.S. Army was left Friday without a chief of staff, the corps' top job. There has been no official replacement for General James McConville since his retirement became effective Friday. This is due to a single senator's move to block such appointments. Tommy Tuberville, a Republican legislator from Alabama and member of the Armed Services Committee has been blocking senior officer appointments in the Armed Forces for months. He is doing so in protest against the Department of Defense's abortion policy.
— U.S. Army Chief of Staff (@ArmyChiefStaff) August 4, 2023
This is the same situation that the Marine Corps (USMC) has been in since July. Although Joe Biden has nominated General Randy George to succeed McConville as head of the Army, he will not be sworn in until the Senate approves him. It will be the first time in history that two branches of the Armed Forces will not have an official leader at the same time.
Senator Tuberville received harsh criticism for his block of these appointments. His detractors accuse him of creating a dangerous situation exposing national security. However, Tuberville has already responded on several occasions that his block is practically symbolic, since thanks to interim leadership, the Armed Forces is operating normally on a day-to-day basis.
(2/2) This is not over.
Full statement below. ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/DCYTlFBHVi
— Coach Tommy Tuberville (@SenTuberville) August 1, 2023
Tuberville's decision is a way to lobby against the Department of Defense (DOD). The Alabama senator considers the pro-abortion policies of Lloyd Austin and the Biden administration to be illegal. The DOD offers a series of privileges and facilities to those workers who wish to have an abortion. They are provided with a transfer to a state to undergo the operation, along with a few weeks of sick leave. This is all financed by public funds, complains Tuberville, who argues that since Roe v. Wade was overturned, the federal government cannot fund a pro-abortion policy for its agencies and institutions.
In late July, tensions between Tuberville and the Biden administration came to a head. The federal government announced its decision not to move the Space Command headquarters to Alabama, Tuberville's state, as had been announced. Instead, the Biden administration chose Colorado, a blue state.