Sen. Blackburn’s plan to ‘unawaken’ the military foiled by Democrats

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EXCLUSIVE: A plan proposed by Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., to “unleash” the U.S. military was halted by Senate Democrats this week.

Blackburn, through two amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), worked to ensure that military parents control their children’s education and that Congressional funding for “woke” programs Department of Defense (DOD) Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Program would have more restrictions.

In a classified hearing on Wednesday, Senate Democrats on the Armed Services Committee rejected both measures.

“The US military must focus on confronting the new ‘axis of evil’ – communist China, Russia, Iran and North Korea. These regimes don’t care about our military awakening or the pronouns of our soldiers,” Blackburn told Fox News Digital. .

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“Pentagon leaders should spend their time learning lessons from their disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan, not promoting critical race theory and revival. When our brave men and women fight on the battlefield, their Children must be protected from government-sponsored indoctrination. These proposals are not controversial. Democrats should be happy to support them and help refocus the energy and efforts of the Department of Defense, where they need to be. be, on the fight against our adversaries.

Senator Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) on February 24, 2022 in Orlando, Florida.
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Senator Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) on February 24, 2022 in Orlando, Florida.
(AP Photo/John Raoux)

The military has recently come under scrutiny from congressional Republicans for passing new diversity and inclusion initiatives, which they say take away from the military’s primary mission of protecting the country.

However, former Pentagon spokesman John Kirby has previously dismissed these GOP claims, saying the “wake-up” argument in the military “drives a stake through a strawman,” and that the diversity and inclusion actually makes the military stronger.

Blackburn’s proposed First Amendment, “Stop Experimenting with Military Children”, stated that parents, “the unawakened teachers”, should be at the center of their children’s education.

The senator cited examples of Department of Defense (DOD) teachers who claimed it was “appropriate” to hide a child’s gender transition from their parents.

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The amendment would require the DOD to inform or notify parents of “any matter relating to the mental, emotional, or physical health or well-being of their child.” In addition, it would ensure that legal adults are informed of the health care their child or minor dependents may receive.

The second of the amendments, “Keep Our Military Focused on Lethal Threats”, would keep the military focused on “creating the deadliest fighting force on planet Earth”, and nothing else.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley speaks with reporters after a virtual Ukrainian Defense Contact Group meeting at the Pentagon on May 23, 2022.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley speaks with reporters after a virtual Ukrainian Defense Contact Group meeting at the Pentagon on May 23, 2022.
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

“Instead, Joe Biden’s military leaders are secretly trying to turn our brave fighters into warriors for social justice,” the accompanying text reads.

The amendment would have required the Under Secretary of Defense to notify Congress of expenditures related to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives. It would also give Congress the authority to use its purse power to oversee DOD spending and prevent the agency from using the funding as a “blank check” for DEI spending.

The senator is referring to a letter from Secretary of Defense Mark Milley to Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., the senior member of the Armed Services Committee, from earlier this year, stating that the military has spent 5,889,082 man-hours to climate change and DEI activities.

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Additionally, the DOD budget confirmed that the Air Force spent $68 million on DEI initiatives in 2021.

Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., arrives for the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the conclusion of military operations in Afghanistan and plans for future counterterrorism operations in the Dirksen Building Sept. 28, 2021.

Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., arrives for the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the conclusion of military operations in Afghanistan and plans for future counterterrorism operations in the Dirksen Building Sept. 28, 2021.
(Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

Jack Reed, DR.I., and Inhofe announced Thursday that the committee has completed the NDAA’s markup for fiscal year 2023. This is the 62nd consecutive year the Senate has met in a bipartisan fashion to secure funding for the national fighting force. .

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When announcing the committee’s markup schedule in May, Reed wrote in a statement, “Together with Ranking Member Inhofe and our committee colleagues, I pledge to maintain our tradition of strong deliberation and bipartisan collaboration to ensure that we provide our military men and women with the resources, training, equipment and capabilities they need to accomplish their missions and protect American families.”

Reed did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment on the markup.

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