The dumbest racist in the Senate

Michael Arceneaux
6 min readJul 14, 2023

The state of Alabama owes the rest of the country an apology for Tommy Tuberville.

@TTuberville/Twitter

Tommy Tuberville is too stupid for words…but I will try.

The football coach turned Alabama senator is a member of the Armed Services Committee and is

presently solely responsible for holding up the promotions of hundreds of senior leaders at the Pentagon.

It’s based on his objection to a Defense Department policy that permits military personnel and their families to recoup travel expenses incurred while seeking an abortion if they are stationed in states that ban or restrict the procedure.

Tuberville’s obstruction has for the first time in more than a century left the U.S. Marine Corps without a Senate-approved commandant.

While speaking at a news conference in Helsinki alongside Finnish President Sauli Niinisto on Thursday, President Joe Biden was asked by an American reporter if he would be willing to talk to Tuberville directly about ending his blockade.

“I’d be willing to talk to him if there’s any possibility of changing this ridiculous position that is jeopardizing U.S. security,” Biden reportedly said. “I expect the Republican Party to stand up, stand up and do something about it.”

Biden said Tuberville’s attempts to use military promotions as leverage on a social issue by affecting foreign policy “is bizarre.”

Tuberville was given an opportunity to explain himself days prior during an appearance on CNN, but ended up causing more bad national headlines over another widely condemned point of view related to the military.

In May, Tuberville had an interview with the Alabama station WBHM where he was asked: “Do you believe they should allow white nationalists in the military?”

He answered: “Well, they call them that. I call them Americans.”

And continued with: “We are losing in the military so fast. And why? I can tell you why. Because the Democrats are attacking our military, saying we need to get out the white extremists, the white nationalists, people that don’t believe in our agenda, as Joe Biden’s agenda.”

When asked by CNN’s Kaitlan Collins to explain those comments, here is how the exchange went (via CNN).

COLLINS: But just to be clear, you agree that White nationalists should not be serving in the US military? Is that what you’re saying?

TUBERVILLE: If people think that a White nationalist is racist? I agree with that. I would agree they shouldn’t.

COLLINS: But a White nationalist is someone who believes that the White race is superior to other races.

TUBERVILLE: Well, that’s some people’s opinion. And I don’t think. I mean a lot –

COLLINS: It’s not opinion.

TUBERVILLE: Pardon?

COLLINS: What’s your opinion?

TUBERVILLE: My opinion of a White nationalist, if somebody wants to call them a White nationalist, to me, is an American. It’s an American. Now, if that White nationalist is a racist, I’m totally against anything that they want to do, because I am 110% against racism.

But I want somebody that’s in our military, that’s strong, that believes in this country, that’s an American that will fight along anybody, whether it’s a man, or woman, Black or White, red. It doesn’t make any difference.

And so, I’m totally against identity politics. I think it’s ruining this country. And I think that Democrats ought to be ashamed for how they’re doing this, because it’s dividing this country, and it’s making this country weaker every day.

COLLINS: But that’s not identity politics. You said a White nationalist is an American.

TUBERVILLE: It is identity politics.

COLLINS: You said a White nationalist is an American. But a White nationalist is someone who believes horrific things. You don’t — do you really think that’s someone who should be serving in the military?

TUBERVILLE: Well, that’s just a name that it’s been given.

COLLINS: It’s not. It’s a real –

TUBERVILLE: I mean, listen?

COLLINS: It’s a real definition. There’s real concerns about extremism.

TUBERVILLE: So, if you’re going to do away with most White people in this country, out of the military, we got huge problems.

One day after that embarrassing back-and-forth, Tuberville told reporters, “White nationalists are racists.”

Some watched the exchange and observed in real time that perhaps Tuberville was simply too dumb to know what a white nationalist is. That in his mind, the turn of phrase was just an insult for people like him. This is the same man that didn’t know the three branches of government — describing them in an interview during his senatorial campaign, “You know, the House, the Senate, and the executive.” And after the January 6 insurrection, he suggested this: “We probably could have had a swearing-in and inauguration later after we got this virus behind us a little bit.”

When Herschel Walker, a man with cauliflower mash for brains, ran for Senate, I pegged him to be the Black answer to Tommy Tuberville, a football coach who has a block for brains but is no less electable as a football legend running in the South as a Republican.

All they have to do is vote as their told and the GOP is fine with it. The Senate has already debased itself when the likes of Marsha Blackburn, another dimwitted fool, was sworn in. The same can be said of Rand Paul, who routinely reminds you that not even an advanced degree can cure dingbat, though.

Unfortunately, this blockhead is now causing real damage. Behind the headlines about the blockage of military promotions are families that can’t move and settle into the next stage of their lives. All over a policy that as an old white man who talks like he hasn’t read anything above a fifth grade reading level in 40 years, he shouldn’t be weighing in on like this anyway.

For what it’s worth, though, even if the man is fucking dumb, I question whether he had absolutely no clue as to what a white nationalist is.

Right before he defends white nationalists, he defends “white extremists” by name.

A white man from Alabama saying that isn’t so dumb that he can’t figure out what a white nationalist is.

And even if I did give his dense ass the benefit of the doubt, what about his long list of racist and xenophobic years dating his entry into politics?

It’s unfortunate that history wasn’t brought up when Tuberville invoked it after a reporter for NBC News asked him about his previous comments about white nationalism.

“I mean, everybody’s got a different — but I’m not getting into definitions,” he said. “I am totally against any form of racism. I always have been. I was a football coach. I’ve dealt with more minorities than everybody in this building. And so, I treated everybody with respect and made sure everybody had full opportunity.”

“My middle finger” is the only response I feel comfortable enough to share in a public space.

Meanwhile, Biden said he expected the Republican party to “stand up” to Tuberville’s hold and “do something about it.”

Biden added, “I’m confident that the mainstream Republican Party … does not support what he’s doing but they’ve got to stand up and be counted. That’s how it ends.”

Biden is the same person who celebrates segregationist senators, so his naivete is to be expected.

Yet Tuberville has already shut down the prospect of being talked down by any Republican or Democrat.

“Well, that’s not gonna happen,” Tuberville told CNN’s Manu Raju. “You know, that. I’ve already told that’s not gonna happen. I’m doing it for, not for the Republican Party. I’m doing it for Republicans and Democrats and citizens of this country. I’m not doing it for just Republicans. I’m doing it for the Constitution.”

The Constitution he never talks like he’s read.

I genuinely believe a half-eaten turkey leg could do a better job of being senator of Alabama than Tommy Tuberville. Yet in all likelihood, that dumb racist will die in that office. It is depressing to consider how much damage this bottom barrel man will cause by then.

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Michael Arceneaux

New York Times bestselling author of “I Can’t Date Jesus” and “I Don’t Want To Die Poor.”