White House pounces on Tuberville’s military holdups: ‘Stop playing politics’

The White House on Tuesday pounced on Sen. Tommy Tuberville’s (R-Ala.) hold on hundreds of military promotions, saying that Americans have had enough with him and Senate Republicans playing politics with service members.

“The American people have had enough with the excuses. Senator Tuberville, and all 48 Senate Republicans who are standing by him, owe it to the country to stop playing politics with the lives of those who serve in uniform and their families, and risking our nation’s safety,” White House spokesman Andrew Bates said in a memo.

The memo highlighted that former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R), a presidential hopeful, criticized the hold Tuesday, arguing that “there’s got to be other ways” to protest the Pentagon’s abortion policy.  

It also highlighted a CNN report about hundreds of military families who recently signed a petition for Tuberville to relent, calling his hold “political showmanship.”

The Defense Department’s new abortion policy provides paid leave and travel reimbursement for abortions. Tuberville argues it violates the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits federal funds from being used for abortion.

The White House memo, titled “The Evolving World of Senator Tommy Tuberville,” also points to Tuberville’s past comments about why he is holding up the military promotions since he began his protest in February.

“For nearly six months, Senator Tuberville’s excuses for holding up the confirmation of more than 300 senior military positions have piled up, with each one weaker than the last,” Bates said.

The memo noted that Tuberville said in February that the abortion policy was an “illegal expansion of [Department of Defense] authority,” in April said “the military is top heavy” and last month said that the freeze is not holding up readiness. 

President Biden and other top officials have for weeks been hammering Tuberville about his protest. Last week, the White House called out Tuberville on X , formerly known as Twitter, posting “This you?” and sharing a series of headlines about the issues the holds have caused. 

Tuesday's memo is the latest example of the White House recently becoming punchier going into 2024, increasingly jumping in and bashing the GOP. Earlier Tuesday, it issued a statement accusing Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) of lying in order to cave to the far-right members of the House Republican Conference and their push for an impeachment inquiry into Biden.

DEVELOPING: Taliban Claims it Shot Down U.S. Air Force Plane Carrying CIA Officials in Afghanistan

By LifeZette | January 27, 2020

The Taliban has just taken responsibility, claiming they shot down a United States Air Force plane in Afghanistan which they say was carrying ‘high-ranking’ CIA officers.

The Daily Star reported that the aircraft was shot down on Monday afternoon in the Ghazni province of the Middle Eastern nation.

Originally, it was claimed by local officials that the plane was a Boeing 737-400 jet belonging to Ariana Airlines that was carrying 83 people, but photos clearly showed that the aircraft had a U.S. Air Forces logo.

This caused the U.S. military to launch an investigation into the incident, and the Taliban has since admitted that they shot down the plane, which was in fact a U.S. Air Force Bombardier E-11A.

According to the The Daily Star, a Taliban spokesman said in a statement that everyone onboard the plane was killed, and that passengers included high-ranking CIA officers.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid added that “lots” of U.S. service members were killed in the crash, but since the terrorist group is known to exaggerate when it comes to casualty figures, it is unknown at this time just if the statement is true or not.

RELATED: Rocket Strikes U.S. Embassy in Baghdad

The plane reportedly came down in the mountainous Deh Yak district just 10km (6.2 miles) from a U.S. military base at around 1:15pm local time.

The area where the plane crashed is controlled by the Taliban, which made it difficult for Afghan forces to reach the crash site earlier.

The U.S. Air Force has yet to officially commented on this situation.

“We are aware of the reports and are investigating,” an official with the U.S. Defense Department told Military Times. “At this point, we cannot confirm it is a DOD [Department of Defense] asset.”

Ghazni police commander Ahmed Khalid Wardak told the BBC that there is currently no information available about casualties, as it is unknown just how many people were onboard the plane at the time of the crash.

This piece originally appeared in LifeZette and is used by permission.

Read more at LifeZette:
Crucial Moderate Senators Are ‘Offended’ and ‘Stunned’ After Nadler Accuses Senators of ‘Cover-Up’
Congressional Democrats Add Insult to Injury by Alienating Second Possible Impeachment Trial Swing Vote
Rocket Strikes U.S. Embassy in Baghdad

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