While House lawmakers will spend the week debating new policies for the military, senators will question the man who will be charged with carrying out those changes.
The Senate Armed Services Committee will hold a nomination hearing for Air Force Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr., President Joe Biden’s pick to be the next Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Brown is expected to face tough questioning from Republican members, but his biggest obstacle will be Alabama Republican Sen. Tommy Tuberville, who has a hold on more than 200 Defense Department nominees over the military’s abortion access policy.
A few hours after that hearing, the House Rules Committee will set the parameters for floor debate expected to begin this week on the annual defense authorization bill, which contains hundreds of policy changes for the Pentagon in the coming year. More than 1,500 amendments were submitted by lawmakers for the draft bill in recent weeks, but only a small fraction of those are expected to be considered.
Democrats in the chamber are expected to push back against GOP efforts to limit abortion access, transgender medical care limits and other social issues included in the measure. But Republicans are expected to use the measure to reinforce their campaign priorities ahead of negotiations with the Democratic-controlled Senate later this summer.
Both sides hope to have a final product for lawmakers to consider by early fall. Whether Brown can be confirmed in the same timeline is unclear.
Leo covers Congress, Veterans Affairs and the White House for Military Times. He has covered Washington, D.C. since 2004, focusing on military personnel and veterans policies. His work has earned numerous honors, including a 2009 Polk award, a 2010 National Headliner Award, the IAVA Leadership in Journalism award and the VFW News Media award.