Tommy Tuberville enjoys playing for the cameras and must have thought he was on the friendly confines of Fox News or somewhere where he can get away with his nonsense. However, he was in for a rude shock when Senator Mark Kelly, a Captain in the U.S. Navy, fighter pilot, and astronaut, wasn’t about to let his claim slide and called him out on it, much to Tuberville’s chagrin.
Source: Washington Examiner
Sens. Mark Kelly (D-AZ) and Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) verbally sparred over who is the most pro-military during a heated Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on Thursday.
Tuberville said that “there’s nobody more military up here than me” during the hearing for the nominations of Derek Chollet, who has been picked to be the next undersecretary of defense for policy, and Cara Abercrombie, who will be the assistant secretary of defense for acquisition if confirmed.
Kelly, a Navy veteran and former NASA astronaut, took exception to his claim when it was his turn to question the witnesses, which occurred immediately after the Alabama senator’s time.
“As far as I can tell, there’s at least four of us, maybe more, that served in the United States military. In some cases, for decades, and at least three combat veterans,” the retired Navy pilot said. “So, I take great exception to what Sen. Tuberville had to say, and I’ve heard him say it before, and it just doesn’t make any sense. So, I wish you would please reevaluate what you think your experience and, you know, just be a little bit more careful about what you say about the United States military.”
The former football coach-turned-politician retorted, “When you have a father die on active duty, you have a right to say whatever you want,” to which Kelly replied, “No, I don’t think that’s the case. You have folks here that have served in the United States military, and I think in multiple branches.”
To their credit, the conservative Washington Examiner noted that almost everyone else on the Armed Forces Committed had served, except for Tommy Tuberville.
Among committee members, Chairman Jack Reed (D-RI) served in the Army, Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI) volunteered for the Navy Reserve and served overseas after 9/11, Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) lost both her legs in the Iraq War while serving in the Army as a pilot, Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK) serves in the Marine Corps Reserve and spent time in the Middle East and the Horn of Africa, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) served in the Army, ranking member Roger Wicker (R-MS) served in the Air Force, and Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) served overseas in the Army Reserve. Tuberville did not serve.