U.S. Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) has taken a controversial position in recent months by single-handedly holding up the progress of military promotions in protest of a policy that reimburses service members for travel expenses related to receiving an abortion.
While his role in the standoff has elicited criticism from within the Pentagon, the Democratic Party, and even some within the GOP, he has maintained that the underlying issue warrants such a firm stance.
Beyond simply criticizing the Alabama Republican’s politics, former CIA Director Michael Hayden provided an assessment that struck many social media users as a direct threat.
“Should Tommy Tuberville be removed from his committee?” another user asked on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter. “Yes or no?”
Hayden replied: “How about the human race?”
His suggestion that Tuberville should be “removed” from the “human race” prompted a litany of responses expressing outrage, including from several who tagged law enforcement agencies to advise them of the apparent threat.
— Steve Friend (@RealStevefriend) October 10, 2023
Cody Sargent of the Heritage Foundation argued that Hayden’s remark should be concerning to all Americans.
“Former director of the CIA saying a U.S. senator should be killed,” he wrote. “Do you feel safe knowing people like this are spying on you? This is why we must dismantle the entrenched, arrogant ruling class in D.C.”
Not only had Hayden declined to remove the post as of this writing, he doubled down in a subsequent statement addressing the criticism he had received.
“I was surprised to wake up this morning and discover that many MAGAnuts had lost their minds over my suggestion that ‘Coach’ Tuberville not be considered a member of the human race,” he wrote.”I stand by that view. I’m wishing you all a nice day even the intransigent Tommy Tuberville.”
“The Pentagon clearly thinks forcing taxpayers to facilitate abortion is more important than confirming their top nominees without a vote,” asserted Tuberville spokesman Steve Stafford. “They could end this situation TODAY by dropping their illegal and immoral policy and get everyone confirmed rapidly, but they refuse. If the Biden administration wants their nominees confirmed then Senate Democrats can do what Coach just did in September and file a cloture petition to force a vote.”