GOP senator calls on Biden to fire Sullivan, national security team

GOP Sen. Marsha BlackburnMarsha BlackburnChina draws scrutiny over case of tennis star Peng Shuai Sunday shows preview: Boosters open to all US adults; House Dems pass spending plan on to Senate Photos of the Week: President Biden, Kenosha protests and a pardon for Peanut Butter MORE (Tenn.) on Thursday joined in on the Republican criticism of the Biden administration’s withdrawal from Afghanistan, calling on the president to fire national security adviser Jake SullivanJake SullivanBiden administration resists tougher Russia sanctions in Congress GOP holds on Biden nominees set back gains for women in top positions NATO head warns Russia against Ukrainian incursion MORE and other members of his team. 

Joe Biden needs to fire his national security team, starting with Jake Sullivan," tweeted Blackburn, a staunch ally of former President TrumpDonald TrumpStowaway found in landing gear of plane after flight from Guatemala to Miami Kushner looking to Middle East for investors in new firm: report GOP eyes booting Democrats from seats if House flips MORE

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The Tennessee senator has repeatedly taken to social media in recent days to rail against President Biden amid the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan. On Wednesday she demanded that he “take ownership for his weak leadership that led to the crisis.” 

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Sullivan, who worked as a senior adviser to Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonRepublicans seem set to win the midterms — unless they defeat themselves Poll: Democracy is under attack, and more violence may be the future Popping the progressive bubble MORE when she served as secretary of State, has become a central target of criticism from Republicans and Democrats alike over how the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan is being carried out. 

Missouri Sen. Josh HawleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleyGOP holds on Biden nominees set back gains for women in top positions Graham emerges as go-to ally for Biden's judicial picks The GOP's post-1/6 playbook is clear — and it's dangerous MORE (R), who in April voiced support for Biden’s decision to withdraw troops from Afghanistan by the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, said Wednesday that Biden has “lost the confidence of the American people and the ability to lead.” 

“Biden’s entire defense and foreign policy team must resign," he tweeted, also calling for a "full congressional inquiry" into how the Biden administration overestimated Afghan forces’ ability to hold off advancing Taliban insurgents. 

Sullivan and other members of Biden’s security team have also received direct condemnation from some Democratic strategists, with Brett Bruen, the director of global engagement in the Obama White House, saying earlier this week that Biden should fire his national security adviser. 

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“He has to restructure how and with whom he is making foreign policy decisions, allowing for more input from career experts,” Bruen wrote in a Monday USA Today op-ed.  

Biden has stood by his decision to remove U.S. troops from Afghanistan, arguing that his options were limited due to an agreement former President Trump reached with the Taliban to remove all U.S. soldiers from the country by May 1. 

However, Biden said Wednesday that U.S. troops will now remain in Afghanistan until all Americans who want to leave are evacuated. 

The administration has sent thousands of additional soldiers to the region in recent days in order to assist in the safe evacuation of American diplomats, as well as Afghan allies and refugees who have applied for Special Immigrant Visas. 

The U.S. has aimed to evacuate some 5,000 to 9,000 people per day amid growing fears of a hostile Taliban regime and what it could mean for the country’s population, especially women and girls.