(TheRedAlertNews.com) – In a misguided effort, Fox News national security correspondent Jennifer Griffin blasted Republican Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville’s ongoing hold of military nominations for what she characterizes as the cause of detrimental effects on the U.S. military.
Tuberville has been consistently placing holds on the nominations of numerous U.S. military officers, a move motivated by his opposition to the Department of Defense’s (DOD) policy that funds travel expenses for female personnel seeking an abortion in non-military facilities.
Established by the agency in February, this policy has been defended by Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, who emphasized its legal grounding and necessity. He pointed out that a significant portion of military personnel are women who often lack access to essential reproductive healthcare due to their duty stations.
“[O]ne in five of our troops are women,” Austin told Tuberville. “And they don’t get a chance to choose where they’re stationed, so almost 80,000 of our women are stationed in places where they don’t have access to non-covered reproductive healthcare. And I heard from our troops, I heard from our senior leaders, I heard from our chiefs and also our secretaries and this policy is based on a strong legal ground.”
Austin urged Tuberville to reconsider his position to enable the progression of the nominations, emphasizing the significant impact it would have on the force.
Republicans have countered, arguing that the policy contravenes the Hyde Amendment, which restricts the use of federal funds for abortion services, except in cases of rape, incest, or when physical conditions endanger the mother’s life.
Despite Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s authority to confirm military nominees through “regular order,” experts speculate he has refrained from scheduling votes, possibly to leverage political points related to abortion. Tuberville has expressed regret over the delays but remains steadfast in his stance against taxpayer-funded abortions.
“I hate to have to do this. It’s unfortunate. But we make the laws over here. The DOD doesn’t. This is not about abortion. It’s about taxpayer-funded abortions,” Tuberville told Punchbowl News. “If this was about a list of personnel, people actually doing the fighting, this might be different … If this had to do with winning a war, obviously I wouldn’t be doing this.”
Elaine Donnelly, president of the Center for Military Readiness, criticized the senior military leaders’ involvement in this political issue, stating, “I have never seen anything like this: Three top civilian military leaders setting an extremely bad example for subordinate troops, who are supposed to stay out of politics,” as told to the DCNF.