July 30, 2020
Donald Trump submitted the nomination of Anthony J. Tata to the post of Under Secretary of Defense for Policy with the Department of Defense to the U.S. Senate on June 11, 2020. Retired Brig. Gen. Tata has a long history making bigoted and embarrassingly fact-free declarations:
- Repeated false claims based on bigoted narratives about Islam that the nation’s first Black President was a “Muslim,” and a “terrorist leader” with “Islamic roots” who sought “a weaker America.”
- Called Islam “most oppressive violent religion I know of.”
- In one of his novels that was published in 2019, he included a subplot about “Islamic gang rape” of white women.
- Repeatedly invoked the “birtherism” conspiracy theory about President Obama.
- Promoted conspiracy theories that John Brennan, the former CIA director, wanted to oust Trump from office, and pushed a bogus conspiracy theory that Brennan sent a coded tweet to order the assassination of Trump in 2018.
- Called veteran Congresswoman Maxine Waters a “vicious race baiting racist” for her defense of Rodney King, a victim of police violence.
- Invoked plantation slavery to criticize a Black news anchor.
- He was a leader in the effort to re-segregate schools.
MRFF joined a coalition of over 50 organizations representing civil and human rights advocates, including the Southern Poverty Law Center, the North Carolina NAACP, Americans United for Separation of Church and State, the Anti-Defamation League, Faithful America, MoveOn, and other allies, spearheaded by Muslim Advocates. On July 29, 2020, this coalition sent a letter to Senators considering Tata’s nomination urging them to reject this nomination based on what would be “one of the most clearly bigoted executive nominees in recent memory”.
On Thursday, July 30, 2020, the Washington Post reported “Senate hearing for controversial Pentagon nominee Anthony Tata canceled just before it was set to begin”.
In response to this news, MRFF President/Founder Mikey Weinstein issued the following statement:
The Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) celebrates the sudden, last-minute cancellation of the United States Senate confirmation hearing of the reprehensible Anthony Tata for the extremely senior DoD position of Under Secretary of Defense for Policy and the withdrawal of his nomination by the White house. MRFF vigorously opposed Tata’s confirmation!
Why, you might ask? Because Tata is a rapacious racist and bigot and is an evil purveyor of pervasive and pernicious Islamophobic prejudice. He is not qualified to run a lemonade stand let alone occupy the 3rd highest position in the Pentagon.