This will be a companion diary to Bill’s excellent post this morning. We wrote our posts at the same time, so this one was held until after Bill’s. – REE
As expected, New Jersey’s congressional delegation split along party lines in yesterday’s historic stand-alone vote to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, the wildly misnamed, ineffective and exclusionary rule that has governed the United States Armed Forces since 1993 during the Clinton administration. The policy was never fair, and it never worked. Theoretically it restricted the military from efforts to discover or reveal closeted gay, lesbian, and bisexual servicemembers or applicants, while at the same time barring those who are openly gay, lesbian, or bisexual from military service.
Here’s the House Clerk vote tally for DADT repeal.
Efforts to overturn it picked up speed after a federal district court judge ruled in Log Cabin Republicans v. United States the policy is unconstitutional. An injunction was issued a month later prohibiting Department of Defense from enforcing it, but it remains under a stay, pending appeal. That all goes away if the Senate passes repeal. Majority Leader Steny Hoyer says he’s been told that Joe Lieberman (I-CT) & Susan Collins (R-ME) who are leading this effort in the Senate, have the votes to repeal DADT in the Senate. It’s in Harry Reid’s court now.
Last week, the Senate failed to break a Republican filibuster of that measure, with only one Republican, Collins, voting to advance the bill. Yesterday, Jonathan Capehart at the Washington Post – in post heavily emailed around – excoriated Harry Reid for not prioritizing a DADT Senate vote. Lieberman said this morning he hopes a Senate DADT vote will be scheduled for Sunday or Monday, immediately following the completion of the omnibus appropriations bill that funds the government. Both our senators, Lautenberg and Menendez, are among at least 40 cosponsors of a stand-alone bill in the Senate for DADT repeal (S.4023), introduced Friday.
New Jersey wants Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell repealed.