Time Ticks Away for ‘Don’t Ask’ Repeal

From the Washington Post: “Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) has said she will vote for repeal [of the don’t ask, don’t tell ban on openly gay servicemembers] if [Senate Majority Leader Harry] Reid can ensure a fair debate and will allow Republicans to introduce amendments.” Which he, of course, refused to do during the pre-election vote, ensuring united GOP opposition and a successful filibuster. Now, time is running out, so “If legislative efforts fail, LCR will turn all of its energies to its federal court case, which challenges the constitutionality of the policy.” And we’ll have to see how that goes.

Also in the Post, Jonathan Capehart opines: “now Reid gets a second chance to do the right thing.” Again, we shall see.

More. Obama marks Veterans Day with his latest move: he asks the Supreme Court to keep don’t ask, don’t tell in effect, as his administration appeals the district court ruling that held the military’s discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation to be unconstitutional. On Friday, the Supreme Court granted Obama’s request, keeping the gay-ban in place.

On the legislative front, the Log Cabin Republicans say they have “conducted meetings with numerous Republican senators potentially in favor of repeal, all of whom are waiting for the President’s call.” And waiting, and waiting…

Furthermore. From the Washington Times:

Many Republicans wanted to debate amendments on how the nation would handle trials for suspected terrorists, and also wanted a chance to try to strike language that would allow military hospitals to provide abortions to women willing to pay for them.

Asked whether Ms. Collins, the ranking Republican on the Armed Services Committee, would support a repeal effort, her spokesman, Kevin Kelley, said “she wanted to vote for the defense authorization bill and supports the repeal.”

“Her issue at the time was that Majority Leader Reid had said he would not allow any Republican amendments to the bill at the time. She was opposed to that process, which shut Republicans out of the debate,” he said.

Thanks, Harry.

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