A video of Senator Brian Schatz, a Hawaii Democrat, blasting GOP Senator Josh Hawley over his attempts to block President Joe Biden’s Defense Department nomination has been viewed more than 3 million times on Twitter.
On Thursday, Schatz went to the Senate floor to strongly criticize and condemn Hawley. The remarks came after the Missouri Republican said he would continue to withhold nominees because of the “Joe Biden problem.” Hawley also said that unless there is accountability, their position will remain the same unless we change the policy.
In a video shared on Twitter by Schatz’s communications associate, Sam Jeske, the Democratic senator said Hawley is “harming the Department of Defense.” The Hawaii lawmaker then cited a now-infamous image of Hawley from January 6, 2021, saying, “And it comes from a man who raised his fist in solidarity with the rebels.” The clip has garnered over 3.2 million views as of the time of this writing.
Schatz argued that Hawley’s request for “accountability” was not appropriate – pointing out that he has demanded that Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin resign. Last September, Hawley told CNN that he would continue to be the nominee until Austin stepped down.
“It’s not a serious request,” Schatz said in his attack on Hawley’s situation. “People came up to me all the time during the Trump administration. ‘Do you think Trump should resign? Do you think? [former Secretary of State Rex] Should Tillerson resign?’ Certainly I think people I disagree with should quit their jobs and replace them with people I love.”
Schatz continued, “Of course I think they should all resign. This is how the world works. It is not a fair request to a United States senator that, unless the Secretary of Defense leaves his job, I should resign.” I’m going to block their nominees. It’s absurd.”
In a statement to a press release emailed to newsweekHawley’s office said, “Not a single administration official has been fired or held accountable for their role in the Afghanistan withdrawal disaster, which resulted in the loss of 13 US service members and hundreds or more Americans leaving behind Taliban lines.” gave.”
The press release said, “Sen. Hawley also called out the administration for its failures in Ukraine, demanding that the White House and Democratic allies provide more aid to Ukraine. President Volodymyr Zelensky is urgently requesting, including MiG fighter jets.” And more include intelligence support.”
Hawley’s press secretary, Abigail Maron, responded to Schatz on Thursday, tweeting: “13 US service members killed. Hundreds of Americans cross enemy lines. No accountability for a Biden admin. How can you not be mad? ? Even Senator Schatz couldn’t defend. Biden’s terrible foreign policy. Like every other Democrat he just wants to move on.”
While Hawley’s actions may not permanently block the nominees from moving forward, they do force Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat, to take additional steps to secure his confirmation. Other Democrats have criticized Hawley for stalling the process.
“What my colleague from Missouri is doing is making us less secure because he’s nominated,” Senator Gene Shaheen of the New Hampshire Democrat, reported Politico, said in February. “He’s complaining about our problems in Russia and Ukraine and he’s making it worse because he’s unwilling to allow nominees who can help lead that problem.”
Rumors that Hawley is considering a 2024 presidency have received substantial criticism in the wake of the January 6, 2021 attack on the US Capitol by Donald Trump supporters. As Schatz noted, a photo of Hawley raising his fists in support of protesters went viral after the events of the day. The GOP senator led the effort in the Senate to object to President Joe Biden’s victories in several key swing states.