🇺🇸 Tenacious Tuberville

Plus, no matter how much time passes we will #NeverForget.

The Flag

Good morning, everyone. Usually, we begin our newsletter with some good news. Today, however, we're reserving the space to honor the lives we lost on this day 22 years ago.

The September 11th attacks shook our country to the core and redefined a generation. No matter how much time passes we will #NeverForget.

Sandy Dahl, wife of Flight 93 pilot Jason Dahl, said in 2002, “If we learn nothing else from this tragedy, we learn that life is short and there is no time for hate.”

There are plenty of ways to honor the lives lost on 9/11. You can visit a memorial site, participate in a hero run, or find a stair-climbing event. Another option, which might feel somewhat random and forced, is picking up the phone or telling someone directly, how much they mean to you. Bonus points if this person doesn't share the same political beliefs as you.

At the end of the day, none of us are here forever. Take a moment to tell the people closest to you that you love them. As Americans, we're all in this together. #NeverForget that.


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QUICK CLICKS

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CONGRESS

Tenacious Tuberville

Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) and military leadership continue to spar over Tuberville’s seven-month blockade of military promotions over his objections to the Pentagon’s abortion policies.

Reporting from the Right: Navy secretary accuses Sen. Tuberville of 'aiding and abetting' communists with military holds over abortion (Fox News)

Reporting from the Left: Hundreds of military promotions are on hold as a Republican senator demands end to abortion policy (AP News)

From The Flag: Tuberville is blocking unanimous consent votes in the Senate to confirm, in his own words, “only those at the very top — generals and flag officers. The people who actually fight are not affected at all,” in protest of a Department of Defense policy offering paid leave and reimbursement to service members traveling across state lines for abortions. The secretaries of the Navy, Air Force, and Army wrote an op-ed published in the Washington Post where they argued America's military advantage was being “actively eroded” by Tuberville’s actions.


RIGHT-LEANING SENTIMENT

Mixed: Tuberville is Fighting “Wokeness” vs. This is Irresponsible

  • Tuberville is fighting the good fight and preventing Biden’s “woke” nominees from holding military office.

  • This is growing increasingly dangerous as vital military positions are left in limbo, posing serious challenges for military leadership.

  • It’s not Tuberville who’s at fault. Senate Democrats have options to push through these nominees through but they choose not to.

Tuberville’s Block On Military Promotions Is Freezing Biden’s Slate Of Woke Nominees Tom Jones, The Federalist: “When Biden decided to pay for service members to get abortions, Tuberville moved to block the administration’s senior military promotions. And he hasn’t given an inch. Coach is standing firm. Using taxpayer dollars appropriated for the defense of our nation for abortions is one of the most outrageous and radical actions taken by this administration. Tuberville is standing up for the unborn and millions of Americans who never consented to their money being used for killing babies. But this fight goes beyond abortion. The officers Biden has nominated make up one of the wokest slates of nominees in history, committed to judging soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines by their race and sex, instead of by their merit. These are people who believe that America’s institutions, including the military itself, are hopelessly racist and sexist.”

Tuberville’s stubbornness is aiding and abetting America’s enemies Dov S. Zakheim, The Hill: “Virtually all of Tuberville’s Senate colleagues recognize that his gambit is becoming increasingly dangerous. … Votes on individual promotions would displace all other Senate business including, and especially, appropriations bills, none of which have passed both congressional chambers. The damage that Tuberville is doing to national security is growing daily and is incalculable. It is no longer a matter of just vacating the military’s leadership, with all four service chiefs and the chairmanship of the Joint Chiefs yet to be confirmed, though that continues to pose a serious challenge for military leadership. In addition, there is a not insignificant negative impact on foreign officials who cannot miss the empty frames where the photos of the chiefs normally appear. With the holdup in promotions, the cycle of upward movement at all military levels is being broken, and those men and women who expected to maintain their seniority will find that it has disappeared.”

One more opinion piece from the Right: Blame lazy Democrats, not Tuberville, for confirmation halt Conn Carroll, Washington Examiner


LEFT-LEANING SENTIMENT

This Is an Embarrassment and Dangerous

  • Tuberville is holding up vital military promotions and brazenly thumbing his nose at the longest-serving Republican Senate leader.

  • The Alabama senator tried to defend his widely criticized blocking of military promotions with anti-"woke" blather.

  • MSNBC's Joe Scarborough slammed the Alabama senator for saying he didn't know what the Pentagon does every day

Tommy Tuberville’s Hissy Fit Shows McConnell Has Lost His Hold on the GOP Eleanor Clift, Daily Beast: “It should be a national embarrassment, worthy of widespread outrage, that a former football coach and junior senator from Alabama can hamstring military promotions for months without severe consequence. … Where does GOP Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) stand on Tuberville’s hostage-taking? The longest-serving Senate leader in history is known for his ability to control his side of the aisle. Why isn’t he putting an end to this nonsense? The two most likely reasons are that he’s finally losing his iron grip over his caucus, or he has made a calculated decision to avoid stepping into the culture war that Tuberville’s hold represents, as the junior senator seeks to end what his anti-abortion allies call ‘abortion tourism.’ McConnell in his prime would have ended the Alabama senator’s siege in a millisecond. He told reporters in early May, four months ago, he didn’t support what Tuberville is doing.”

Sen. Tommy Tuberville Says He's Worried About Sailors Reciting Poetry On Ships Ron Dicker, Huff Post: “Tuberville attempted to defend his monthslong blockade by fighting the culture war on ‘wokeness.’ ‘Right now we are so woke in the military, we are losing recruits right and left,’ he said. ‘Secretary [Carlos] Del Toro of the Navy he needs to get to building ships; he needs to get to recruiting; and he needs to get wokeness out of our Navy. We’ve got people doing poems on aircraft carriers over the loudspeaker. It is absolutely insane the direction that we’re headed in our military.’ … Tuberville did not specify the instance of Navy personnel reciting poetry on a ship. But he was likely referring to a spoken-word event on the USS Gerald Ford hosted by the Gay, Lesbian, and Supporting Sailors (G.L.A.S.S.) association in November. Tuberville previously griped about a nonbinary junior officer praising that gathering.”

One more opinion piece from the Left: "A rot in the GOP": Tuberville blasted for military blockade over "poems on aircraft carriers" Tatyana Tandanpolie, Salon


FLAG THIS

Tuberville’s blockade faring poorly with the public

In Alabama and at the national level, Senator Tuberville's blockade is not being received well. VoteVets, a prominent veterans organization with a progressive agenda, commissioned Public Policy Polling to conduct a survey, and found the following results:

  • By a 58%-to-29% margin, Alabama voters think Tuberville “has made his point” and should now drop his hold on military promotions.

  • 55% agree that senior positions going unfilled by confirmed promotions hurts national security.

  • By a 72%-to-14%, Alabamans said military promotions should not be politicized.

  • As a result of Tuberville’s radical tactics, the poll found 45% of Alabamans now see the coach-turned-politician less favorably.


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WATERCOOLER

Battle of Brandywine, Unusual Words, Humanity’s Numbers

“Nation Makers” by Howard Pyle depicts a scene from the battle.

On This Day in 1777: General Sir William Howe and General Charles Cornwallis launch a full-scale British attack on General George Washington and the Patriot outpost at Brandywine Creek near Chadds Ford, in Delaware County, Pennsylvania, on the road linking Baltimore and Philadelphia.

Mental Floss: 56 Delightfully Unusual Words for Everyday Things

The Conversation: Decades of Hype Turned Protein Into a Superfood—and Spawned a Multibillion-Dollar Industry

Quanta Magazine: The Strange Numbers That Birthed Modern Algebra

Today I learned around 109 billion humans have lived and died over the last 192,000 years, according to demographers from the Population Reference Bureau.