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Senate Not Off the Hook on DADT Repeal

Jim Burroway

September 10th, 2010

Despite yesterday’s ruling that “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” the military’s ban on LGBT Americans serving openly, violates the First and Fifth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution, the U.S. Senate is not off the hook in its obligation to repeal the 1993 law. It’s not clear at this stage whether any injunction which may be issued by U.S. District Court Judge Virginia A. Phillips would be binding on the U.S. government nationwide. If not, then it could still be years before the case is decided by the U.S. Supreme Court, and that assumes that the Department of Justice chooses to appeal the ruling.

The Senate is still in its August recess. When it returns this month, there will be tremendous pressure to quickly wrap up work so Senators can go back home and hit the campaign trail in November. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is expected to announce shortly whether the National Defense Authorization Act, which currently includes DADT’s repeal, will be on the legislative calendar. If it is not on the calendar, then the repeal will not likely occur in the current Congress. Some two-thirds of all Americans approve of DADT’s repeal, including most Republicans. As Dan Savage says, if this fruit were hanging any lower, it would be a potato.

Update: A potato? Make that a truffle. Late last night, OneMan-OneWoman, an affiliate of the National Organization for Marriage, tweeted, “There is no need to prohibit gays and lesbians from openly serving in the Armed Forces. They should have the opportunity to serve.” [Hat tip: Joe.My.God]



Timothy Kincaid
September 10th, 2010 | LINK

Okay, it’s official. If NOM isn’t opposing open service, then this battle is over.

Jimmy the Saint
September 10th, 2010 | LINK

Did Maggie Gallagher get kidnapped by aliens? or has NOM really thrown in the towel?

Jim Burroway
September 10th, 2010 | LINK

To be clear, it was not NOM that tweeted the statement, it was a NOM affiliate.

September 10th, 2010 | LINK

but nom’s focus has always been marriage, not the gays; this actually doesn’t surprise me.

September 10th, 2010 | LINK

I never understood why the anti-gays were opposed to gays in the military. You’d think they would want us to go off and get killed in a foreign land.

September 10th, 2010 | LINK

The affiliate’s tweet will be retracted.

The last thing the anti-SSM folks want is to have to argue against recognizing the family ties of wounded vets and fallen soldiers.

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