MSNBC host Joe Scarborough on Friday tore into Sen. Tommy Tuberville of Alabama over his monthslong blockade of critical military appointments, calling the conservative lawmaker the “perfect example” of “rot” within the GOP.
On his program, “Morning Joe,” Scarborough remarked on Tuberville’s past life as a college football coach at institutions that included Ole Miss, Auburn University, Texas Tech, and the University of Cincinnati — and stated that Tuberville needed to realize that he is no longer on the football field.
“I tell you what, if I’m running that conference, I’m getting everybody in a press conference, and we’re telling Tommy, ‘Hey Tommy, you’re not coaching football anymore. We’re not talking about X’s and O’s. We’re not talking about whether you go to the Sugar Bowl or the Astro-Bluebonnet Bowl or whatever bowl you want to go to,’” Scarborough said.
“Tommy, this is life and death,” he continued. “This is about the strength of the United States military. This is about us being able to have leaders in place to project power. This is about not having the Marine Corps commandant for the first time in 150 years. This is about three services not having a military leader with a full range of power necessary to plan forth.”
Scarborough, who served as a Republican congressman from Florida from 1995 to 2001, didn’t relent on his criticism of Tuberville during the segment.
“This is about children whose mothers and fathers have chosen to serve in the United States military to protect and defend this country — children who don’t know right now as a new school year starts where they’re going to go because promotions have been held up because they’re all sitting in limbo because Tommy Tuberville is trying to make a point about abortion,” he said.
Tuberville, incensed that the Pentagon responded to last year’s overturn of Roe v. Wade by affording service members time off and travel expenses for reproductive healthcare, including abortion procedures, isn’t letting go of his six-month blockade against what he feels is the Biden administration’s push to make the military into an “institution for left-wing social engineering.”
Because of Tuberville’s blockade, more than 300 senior military leaders have not been able to receive their promotions. His hold has so far prevented the installation of permanent leaders for the Army, Navy, and Marine Corps.
Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles “CQ” Brown Jr. is now awaiting confirmation to become the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, which is also being held up by Tuberville.
Such a development would be concerning from a national security standpoint in normal times, but with the United States continuing to aid Ukraine in its efforts to fight Russian military forces, the ramifications of the blockade have continued to frustrate a bipartisan group of lawmakers.
Tuberville on Wednesday continued to defend his blockade, criticizing the public recitation of poems by military personnel.
“Secretary [Carlos] Del Toro of Navy, he needs to get to building ships, get to recruiting, and he needs to get wokeness out of our Navy,” the first-term lawmaker said during a Fox News interview. “We’ve got people doing poems on aircraft carriers over the loudspeaker. It is absolutely insane the direction we’re headed in our military.”
Scarborough then lumped in Tuberville with what he said are major problems with the Republican Party.
“There’s a rot in the GOP and Tommy Tuberville is a perfect example of it,” he said.
“I’m sick and tired of these Republicans tearing down the United States of America,” he added.