The Senate returns this week after its August/Labor Day break.  As the Senate returns, two inside the beltway issues are likely to grab Senators' attention: the fate of Republican Leader McConnell and the hold Alabama Senator Tommy Tuberville has placed on the confirmation of military promotions.  Senator Tuberville says that his blocking of military nominations is a protest against the Pentagon policy permitting abortions, and that he will not budge until the policy is changed.

The military says that the nomination of 301 generals and admirals have been placed in limbo by the Senator’s actions.  The bipartisan leadership will need to deal with this issue in the coming days.

This and other tough issues may be made more difficult as questions that are raised about the ability of Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell to remain as the Leader after his second “freeze” episode in Kentucky last week.  While most Republican Senators have publicly rallied to his defense, there can be little doubt that behind the scenes a lot of discussions are taking place.  If a third episode should occur in the coming weeks it is hard to see how McConnell could continue to serve as leader.

No one doubts his extraordinary legislative skills and he may be needed to p...

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