Nikki Haley Challenges Senator Tuberville’s Approach On Military Promotions

In the ongoing debate over abortion access for service members, former South Carolina governor and Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley has emerged as a vocal critic of the Biden administration’s policy while also voicing her concerns over Sen. Tommy Tuberville’s (R-AL) strategy to block military promotions in protest.

At the heart of the matter is Tuberville’s “hold” on general and flag officer promotions, a move that prevents the Democrat-controlled Senate from swiftly approving these nominations through a “unanimous consent” agreement. Tuberville has emphasized that the Senate can still hold individual votes to approve nominations, insisting that he “didn’t create the problem.” 

Questioning Haley about the prolonged hold during an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union,” Tapper noted that the military had expressed concerns about how this standoff was affecting readiness and pointed out the frustration among military spouses.

Haley responded with a question of her own: “Why is the Republican Party tolerating this?”

She expressed her disagreement with the policy allowing reimbursement for travel related to elective abortions and pledged to end it if she becomes president. “Secondly, we don’t need to be using military families as political pawns,” she asserted, emphasizing that this was “a mistake.”

Haley went on to emphasize the sacrifices made by military members and their families, acknowledging that the Biden administration initiated the situation but refraining from endorsing Senator Tuberville’s tactics. Instead, she called for a more individualized approach.

“But if you love our military, if you are so adamant about it, then go and make Congress, Republicans and Democrats, have to go through person by person. Do you honestly think they won’t say, OK, this is ridiculous, let’s put an end to it?” she said further.

Haley’s message was clear: While she stands firmly against the Biden administration’s abortion policy and believes military families should not be political pawns, she does not endorse the blockade tactic.

Her stance on the issue aligns with fellow candidate and former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who has also taken Tuberville to task on the campaign trail. 

Addressing the Alabama congressman’s tactic, Christie said, “I share his concern about the Biden administration’s disregard of the Hyde Amendment. But I don’t believe the best way to do it is to impact our military readiness. Now some will say it’s Joe Biden’s fault, and he shares the fault for that.”

On the other hand, notable presidential candidates within the party, including Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, businessman Vivek Ramaswamy and former Vice President Mike Pence have voiced support for Tuberville’s actions.