The Senate Thursday confirmed Gen. Eric Smith to formally advance to Marine Corps commandant and Army Gen. Randy George to become Army chief of staff. Those confirmations follow Wednesday’s vote to confirm Air Force Gen. CQ Brown to become the next Joint Chiefs of Staff chair when Gen. Mark Milley leaves the job Oct. 1.
The high-level confirmations are important, but Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.) has given no indication he will relent in blocking hundreds of senior nominations and promotions, as Stars and Stripes reported. His blanket hold is in protest to the Pentagon’s policy of paying travel costs and providing days off for service members who need to travel out of state for abortion access.
“We are disturbed… by Republicans’ interest in voting exclusively on a few select officers while hundreds of other officers and their families are punished,” Senate Armed Services Committee Chair Jack Reed (D-R.I.) said.
Democrats are considering options to work around the blockade to approve small groups of promotions at a time, Defense News reported.
Marine Corps photo of Gen. Smith by Lance Cpl. David Getz