The Spectacle Blog

DADT Repeal Isn’t Dead Yet

By on 12.9.10 | 6:18PM

As Philip Klein notes here at The American Spectator, the Senate today fell three votes short of repealing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." This is a crushing defeat for the media and the gay lobby, both of which have implemented a full-court press for openly gay military service.

Unfortunately, this issue is not yet dead. The advocates of openly gay service rightly sense that this may be their best chance in years to force open homosexuality within the ranks. And so, they are pressing for a second stand-alone vote before Congress adjourns for Christmas.

Conservative GOP senators, led by John McCain, have a political and moral obligation to stop them, and to keep this vote from ever happening.

Sure, the media and the gay lobby believe that open homosexuality within the ranks is a moral imperative; and that only bigoted "homophobes" stand in the way of this urgent "progressive" measure. The fact is, however, that gay men and women can and do serve now in the U.S. military, and without incidence or disruption, provided they keep their sexuality out of the workplace.

But that's not good enough for the apostles of "progress." No, they want explicit legal recognition and social approval for homosexuality. Thus their demand that DADT be repealed.

Repeal was subsumed within the larger-scale defense authorization bill. This meant that Senators who favored openly gay service sometimes voted differently than you might have expected had you only considered their views on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

GOP Senators Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) and Scott Brown (Massachusetts), for instance, have said that they support repealing DADT. However, they voted against commencing debate on the defense authorization bill. GOP Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) had been expected to vote the same way, but at the last minute, apparently, changed her vote. Collins' decision is especially interesting because she had been singled out for special opprobrium by the Left for her supposed obstinacy in the face of "progress."

But what was Collins obstinate about, exactly? She wasn't obstinate about "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," a law she clearly indicates she is willing to repeal. No, Collins was obstinate about the Senate's right to have a full, free, and open debate about the defense authorization bill -- and she is absolutely right about that.

The Senate, after all, considers itself "the world's greatest deliberative body." Surely, it is reasonable, then, to expect that the Senate will take the time to carefully consider defense policy -- as opposed to ramming through legislation to meet a far-left political imperative. Certainly, that's not asking too much.

So where does this leave us? Practically speaking, it is impossible to see how "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" will be repealed in the new Congress, which will have more than 60 new House Republicans and six new GOP Senators. The vast majority of these new Republican legislators, after all, will not vote to require openly gay service.

The media and the gay lobby know this, of course. Which is why they're pulling out all the stops to ram through a repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" now, in this the waning days of the current Congress.

Sen. Joseph Lieberman (D-Connecticut), in fact, observed on his Twitter page that: 

Senator Reid told me he will bring our free-standing #DADT repeal up for a vote before [the] end of [the] session… We are working with our colleagues and are confident that there are at least 60 Senators who support repeal.

Lieberman's intense politicking on behalf of openly gay service has been deeply disappointing and annoying. However, he is, I fear, right: The votes in the Senate are now there to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

Which is why Republican Senators, led by John McCain, should move heaven and earth to ensure that this vote never happens.

It would be a complete miscarriage of justice to ram through a vote when Congress hasn't come close to doing its due diligence on this issue. And ramming through a vote now when most military service members -- and especially most of the Soldiers and Marines now doing the fighting and dying on our behalf -- don't support repeal would be particularly egregious and wrong.

And I'm sorry, but listening to cosseted Pentagon Generals and Admirals is a wholly inadequate substitute for taking the time to listen to the concerns of our frontline troops and non-commissioned officers.

Senator Collins has it right: The Senate is supposed to be the world's greatest deliberative body. Let the Senate do its job. Let the Senate deliberate. Let it seriously consider the full ramifications of openly gay service before foisting such a radical change on the entire U.S. military.

Send to Kindle

Like this Article

Print this Article

Print Article

More Articles From John R. Guardiano