Ranking Member Raskin and Subcommittee Ranking Member Garcia Call for GAO Review of Senator Tuberville’s Hold on Military Promotions
Washington, D.C. (February 2, 2024)—Rep. Jamie Raskin, Ranking Member of the Committee on Oversight and Accountability, and Rep. Robert Garcia, Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on National Security, the Border, and Foreign Affairs, sent a letter to Comptroller General of the United States and head of the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) Gene L. Dorado, urging him to undertake a review of Senator Tommy Tuberville’s unprecedented ten-month blockade of military promotions, including the short and long-term detrimental effects on Department of Defense (DOD) and our broader national security.
“From February 2023 to December 2023, Senator Tommy Tuberville blocked the promotions of all general and flag officers resulting in more than 425 senior military leaders who were unable to assume their posts during this time. In many instances the blockade forced acting officials to assume these roles without the necessary legal authorities for decision making,” wrote Ranking Member Raskin and Subcommittee Ranking Member Garcia. “Further, Senator Tuberville’s actions created a damaging ripple effect on the careers of service members at all levels. While Senator Tuberville’s holds directly affected hundreds of senior military officials, junior officers indirectly lost the opportunity to rise in rank and gain experience. Such career stagnation radiates massive effects on factors such as servicemember retention, pay, pension, and future opportunities.”
For ten months, Senator Tuberville intentionally blocked more than 425 general and flag officers within the DOD from Senate confirmation and promotion.
At a Senate Armed Services Committee nomination hearing in September 2023, U.S. Navy Admiral Lisa M. Franchetti testified, “…as we continue to not have the confirmed people that we’ve nominated with that experience, we’re going to continue to see an erosion of readiness.” Adm. Franchetti’s statement is extremely concerning given the critical national security importance of ongoing military DOD operations.
In their letter, Ranking Member Raskin and Subcommittee Ranking Member Garcia cite the legal and practical ramifications of the lack of Senate-confirmed military officials in various positions and highlight how Tuberville’s blockade negatively affected service members’ careers and the lives of their family members.
In October 2023, Subcommittee Ranking Member Garcia sent a letter to Subcommittee Chairman Grothman urging him to convene a hearing to examine the damaging effects of Senator Tuberville’s military holds. Chairman Grothman did not respond to Subcommittee Ranking Member Garcia’s request.
Click here to read the letter.