Carl Levin | Don't Ask, Don't Tell | Military | News

Levin: DADT Repeal Will Go in Defense Bill if Votes are There


Today was the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" lobby day on Capitol hill. Hundreds of gay and lesbian veterans lobbied lawmakers to repeal the ban. Here's a photo Senator Joe Lieberman tweeted of himself with HRC President Joe Solmonese and a group of veterans.


Solmonese criticized the President today for his inaction:

"President Barack Obama promised in his State of the Union address that he would work with Congress and the Pentagon to repeal DADT this year. The nation’s top two defense officials spoke in favor of repeal just a few weeks later. Defense Secretary Robert Gates made clear that a new department study would look into how, not if, the repeal process could be implemented. But despite all this, the path to repeal has become cluttered in ways that only Washingtonians could rationalize. At the core of this delay seems to be a desire by the Pentagon to kick the can down the road and stop a vote on the issue this year. As Gates asserted 11 days ago in a letter to the House Armed Services Committee, nothing should be done until the implementation study is complete in December. The White House’s silence is providing oxygen to those who believe that Congress should not act this year."

A new GALLUP poll says 70% of Americans approve of allowing gays to serve openly in the military: "Included in the majority are 60 percent of Republicans, 57 percent of weekly churchgoers and strong majorities of liberals and moderates."

LevinSenator Carl Levin said today that, if the votes are there, he's prepared to include repeal of DADT in the Defense Authorization bill, despite Defense Secretary Robert Gates' letter of last Friday:

"Gates, however, has told Congress that he would 'strongly oppose' legislating repeal before a Department of Defense review is finished in December. That won't stop Levin, who said today that he'll put repeal in the authorization bill anyway, if he can get the votes for it. He said he's not sure if the votes are there. Even so, he said repeal wouldn't go into effect until after the review is finished. 'What we ought to do is repeal it but make the effective date after the report,' Levin said today, according to Roll Call."

Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade talked to several of the veterans who lobbied at the White House yesterday.

Watch it, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. Didn't realize that Joe Solomonese was a veteran.

    Or maybe he's not and is just a media whore who will shamelessly jump into any media event to draw attention to himself and HRC rather than to the issue and the people directly affected.

    Yeah, that sounds more like the Joe we've all come to know and loath.

    Posted by: TampaZeke | May 11, 2010 7:38:58 PM

  2. since when did congress report to gates and not the other way is time for obama to take charge and if necessary fire gates. remember he is a hold over from the repuklicans. maybe he is waiting for their return to control and then will never have to DADT.

    Posted by: walter | May 11, 2010 8:17:23 PM

  3. "pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!" Don't be fooled! Joe Liberman is a turncoat of the highest order.

    Posted by: Harry | May 11, 2010 8:25:04 PM

  4. Really Harry? Well who the fuck else showed up? Cynics are so yesterday's news.

    Posted by: Pee Town | May 11, 2010 11:07:59 PM

  5. I'll remain positive (someone has to balance out the comments). I think there has been a lot of push back over this towards Congress. The arguments against the repeal are insulting and thin at best. The arguments for the repeal are sound and justified. DADT's demise is almost here.

    Posted by: Redebbm | May 11, 2010 11:33:24 PM

  6. If I am not mistaken, Robert Gates is a far right Republican who was appointed by Obama as an attempt to keep his promise that his administration was going to be bi-partisan. My opinion is Gates trying to slow down the process till after the November elections and if the Republican's make gains, then the DADT passage may not happen, which at that time, Gates hands will be free from any type blame from either side. Obama is buying this malarky.

    Posted by: CB | May 12, 2010 12:17:11 AM

  7. @CB I agree.


    "A genuine leader is not a searcher for consensus but a molder of consensus."
    - Martin Luther King, Jr.

    Posted by: Strepsi | May 12, 2010 2:54:55 AM

  8. Joe Lieberman and Joe Solmonese, How long before they flip and make DADT worse?

    And to the comments, You don't need to balance anything. These Joes are bad news and if they are working together on something you should be worried, can you think of something they have been a part of that was positive?

    Posted by: Fenrox | May 12, 2010 9:30:55 AM

  9. Joe Solmonese, a self serving, not interested in the gay population, one at a time issue, non-multitasking, Aunt Marry can stick Joe Liberman up his ass.

    Posted by: Pete | May 12, 2010 2:11:03 PM

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