Many thought our military could handle anything our enemies throw at it. Now reality has set in.
And this top military official made a chilling announcement that has the Pentagon in chaos.
Thanks to Biden, the US military is in a worse situation than at any point under Donald Trump.
With his saber rattling over Ukraine, we’re closer to a major war than ever before.
And, now, three branches of the US military need Senate confirmation due to a stalemate in the upper chamber over Pentagon candidates.
As Adm. Mike Gilday handed over command of naval operations on Monday, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin warned about the national security ramifications of having to rely on acting leadership.
“Because of this blanket hold, starting today, for the first time in the history of the Department of Defense, three of our military services are operating without Senate-confirmed leaders,” Lloyd said during a ceremony at the U.S. Naval Academy.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin: "Starting today for the first time in the history of the Department of Defense, three of our military services are operating without Senate confirmed leaders. This is unprecedented, it is unnecessary, and it is unsafe." pic.twitter.com/gkPfHbmyFt
— CSPAN (@cspan) August 14, 2023
“This is unprecedented, it is unnecessary, and it is unsafe,” he added before calling on the Senate to end the deadlock.
President Joe Biden nominated Adm. Lisa Franchetti to lead the Navy, but she assumed command in an acting capacity on Monday, joining leaders in similar positions at the helms of the Marine Corps and the Army.
One more down as CNO Gilday relinquished command this morning.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said today this is the first time in DOD history three services are without a Senate-confirmed chief. pic.twitter.com/2tbO6A5Wry
— Haley Britzky (@halbritz) August 14, 2023
The backlog began in February, when Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) put a “hold” on general and flag officer nominations in protest of a Pentagon policy that allows female military members expense-paid travel and up to three weeks leave for an elective abortion, which he argues is unlawful.
Tuberville has maintained his stance by objecting to allowing the Democrat-controlled Senate to speedily approve nominations in batches under a “unanimous consent” agreement.
Despite criticism from the Pentagon and other politicians, Tuberville has maintained that his delay is not jeopardizing military readiness and that the Senate may still convene votes in regular order to confirm individual candidates if required.
“Contrary to false reporting, no jobs are going unfilled while the hold is in place,” Tuberville spokesman Steven Stafford told media outlets in a statement. “Instead, highly experienced acting officials are serving in these roles.”
Democrats have argued that clearing the backlog with individual votes would take too long.
“It would paralyze the Senate if all of us had to take one roll call vote after another just to confirm routine, apolitical, qualified generals and other flag officers,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said in remarks earlier this year.
According to the Department of Defense, hundreds of military confirmations have been stalled thus far.
General Charles “CQ” Brown Jr., Biden’s candidate to become the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff once Gen. Mark Milley’s tenure expires in October, is one leader who might be caught up in the standoff.
Stay tuned to the DC Daily Journal.