Senate’s confirmation of Gen. C.Q. Brown as Chair Joint Chiefs of Staff amidst a months-long nominee blockade by Senator Tommy Tuberville, which has left over 300 senior military officers in limbo.
Gen. C.Q. Brown Confirmed as Chair Joint Chiefs of Staff
POLITICO – The U.S. Senate has overwhelmingly confirmed Air Force Gen. C.Q. Brown as the Chair Joint Chiefs of Staff, making him the top military officer in the country. This confirmation comes after a months-long blockade by Senator Tommy Tuberville, who had been protesting the Pentagon’s policy of reimbursing troops for reproductive care-related travel. The 83-11 vote to confirm Gen. Brown was an unexpected development amid Senator Tuberville’s hold on military promotions.
Gen. Brown’s confirmation as Chair Joint Chiefs of Staff is historic, as he becomes only the second Black officer to lead the Joint Chiefs, following Gen. Colin Powell, and he previously served as the first Black military service chief during his tenure as Air Force chief. This confirmation prevents another senior leadership crisis as Gen. Mark Milley prepares to step down from his role at the end of the month. The nominee blockade had already resulted in three key positions within the Joint Chiefs remaining vacant.
Senator Tuberville’s hold on over 300 senior promotions remains, even after Gen. Brown’s Chair Joint Chiefs of Staff confirmation. While Tuberville alone cannot block these confirmations, his insistence on individual votes has caused a significant backlog in the Senate. Senate Armed Services Chair Jack Reed has pledged to continue efforts to clear this logjam, with Democrats’ pressure campaign making headway.
Senator Tuberville’s Nominee Hold Persists: Calls for Negotiation Following Gen. C.Q. Brown’s Confirmation as Chair Joint Chiefs of Staff
According to Yahoo News, despite the confirmation, Tuberville maintains his hold, stating it will remain until the Pentagon changes its abortion policy. Some Republican senators believe that the confirmation of key nominees may open the door to negotiations to resolve the issue. Gen. Brown’s confirmation, while a positive step, raises concerns about the impact of nominee blockades on junior officers and talent retention within the military.
Gen. Brown’s nomination received bipartisan support, with his extensive experience as a fighter pilot and his leadership roles in the Pacific Air Forces and the Middle East making him a suitable choice for the military’s focus on long-term threats, particularly China.