Politico: Bill Repealing Military Gay Ban to Be Introduced Today

Politico reports that legislation is to be introduced today calling for the repeal of the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy: "On Monday, buoyed by a stronger Democratic majority in Congress, Rep.
Ellen O. Tauscher (D-Calif.) will introduce legislation to overturn the
ban against homosexuals serving openly in the military, a Tauscher aide

Tauscher is the lead sponsor of The Military Readiness Enhancement Act, a role she took over from Congressman Martin Meehan. It was first introduced in the 109th Congress. Meehan reintroduced the bill in February 2007, during the 110th Congress. The bill currently has 144 bipartisan co-sponsors. It seeks to repeal the military's failed "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy, replacing it with language prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation in the armed forces.

In late February, the Servicemember's Legal Defense Network (SLDN) urged Defense Secretary Robert Gates to repeal the failed policy in response to a report that the Pentagon announced a new recruitment goal of 1,000 immigrants in
the United States on temporary visas, over the next 12 months.

Said Aubrey Sarvis, executive director of SLDN: "It is ironic that the Pentagon is beginning a program to actively
recruit legal immigrants but continues to exclude citizens who are
capable, tough, and dedicated service members ready and willing to
serve their country. We should be enlisting men and
women in this country – as long as they're qualified – wherever we can
find them."

In early February, Obama said that more analysis was necessary before the ban could be repealed, a statement rebutted by Sarvis, who cited the long list of reports that have shown DADT to be a fialed policy, and the hundreds of prominent military personnel who have come out against the ban.

Watch an interview by SLDN with Rep. Tauscher that was conducted last July,


  1. Dback says

    I’m really torn about this, as I’ve had friends who’ve been in the military who were gay and had to keep their personal lives secret; the list of American heroes who’ve been sacrificed to the stupidity is too long. However, the realist in me says, “We’ve got the economy melting down and a zillion other problems, and the American public is going to say, ‘THIS is a top priority for us right now?'” (Well, yeah, for some of us it is.) The hardcore practical side of me says Obama should just sign an executive order after the mid-term elections in his 2nd term, but that means 6 more years of DADT dismissals. Crud.

  2. ggreen says

    Rep. Ellen O. Tauscher is a political reptile. She is doing this only to take the attention off the shilling she does for the banking, healthcare and insurance industries and their efforts to derail universal healthcare their opposition to EFCA, NAFTA reform and gutting Social Security. Tauscher is a proud “blue dog” a good friend and enabler of GW Bush and his policies. She should not be trusted.

  3. Michael Bedwell says

    Unfortunately, DBACK, Obama cannot simply repeal DADT with an Executive Order as it is a law passed by Congress that turned the existing policies into statute. There are arguments that he could attack it in other ways, such as order investigations/dismissals to stop as Commander-in-Chief, but it’s unlikely he would try that alone, though I would like to see him do it as an interim freeze while the repeal in Congress is being debated.

    HOWEVER, there is NO need for this to become a distraction from dealing with the economy, even if only in the public’s mind. One of the first things he said in the primaries about DADT is that the main thing that is needed is leadership. If he publicly announced his opposition as eloquently and FORCEFULLY as he has spoken about the economy, the majority of Americans would support him as polls suggest they already oppose the policy anyway.

    The stummbling block is recalcitrant dinosaurs in the Pentagon who will, as they did in 1993, conspire with homohaters in Congress to block repeal. THERE is where Obama’s leadership and great-to-see recent “I’m not going to take any bullshit” attitude is needed—in Congress, again, just as he’s demonstrating re the stimulus package, etc.

    And let’s stop with the charade that DADT is anything new. It is only old wine in new bottles with a catchy label. The c 12,500 that have been discharged since its bottling are but the tip of the proverbial iceberg. Probably more than that were discharged between the first challenge to the ban by Leonard Matlovich in 1975 and the DADT games of ’93. Roughly 130,000 have been discharged since gays were first excluded simply for being gay during WWII.

    Overturning DADT would devastate the Antigay Industry’s arugument that we are inferior Americans, and accelerate the achievement of other rights.

    Write/call your Congressperson and Senators, write/call the Whie House, and tell them to repeal DADT NOW.

    Thank you.

    Michael Bedwell

  4. Jimmyboyo says


    But this repub in blue dog dem clothing is just deflecting attention away from her trying to water down foreclosure bill , universal health care, etc

  5. Marc says

    Won’t pass. Nothing will change. Smoke and mirrors.

    By the way, I have friends that are gay. I just wanted everyone to know how progressive I was. But you’ll NEVER be considered as an equal because you aren’t willing to fight for the status.

  6. says

    They way I look at it is that the Armed Forces are an employer – and no employer should be discriminating against the GLBT community any more than they should be discriminating against other minorities. Persons should be discharged for reasons such as not performing on the job and/or violating on-the-job conduct codes. Two men having sexual relations in the barracks is JUST AS BAD as a man and woman having sexual relations in the barracks – consensual or not… (despite our porn fantasies, okay?).

    If a person is willing to serve his country he should be allowed to do so and follow the written codes of conduct and face the consequences of violating them.

    If the generals are more worried about a few gays ravishing the troops when the lights are out rather than they are about real enemies then we have much bigger problems to worry about.

    I think any queasiness or battles will be about recognizing and accommodating the partners of gays and other such social issues….this is NOT going to be an easy battle to just repealing DADT…but hopefully I’m wrong…..

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