The House voted Thursday to let the Defense Department repeal the ban on gay and bisexual people from serving openly in the military, a major step toward dismantling the 1993 law widely known as "don't ask, don't tell."Good stuff. Note that the House voted to approve an amendment attached to the annual Pentagon policy bill, on which they'll vote today. It is expected to pass.
...The House vote was 234 to 194, with 229 Democrats and 5 Republicans in favor, after an emotionally charged debate. Opposed were 168 Republicans and 26 Democrats.
...Separately on Thursday, the Senate Armed Services Committee approved a similar measure allowing the repeal.
Supporters of the repeal hailed it as a matter of basic fairness and civil rights, while opponents charged that Democrats and President Obama were destabilizing the military to advance a liberal social agenda.Despite the fact that there is categorically no evidence to support their claim.
In a statement, Mr. Obama said he was "pleased" by the votes.I really like that he said repealing DADT will make the military stronger, but that "honestly and with integrity" is so passive that it suggests, if unintentionally, that LGB soldiers lack integrity and the legislation is granting it to them, without so much as a nod toward the legislation that forced them into self-denial. "To serve openly and with the dignity they've been denied" would have been better, which I know is nitpicking, but, fuck, it's no time for the president to half-ass it, you know?
"This legislation will help make our armed forces even stronger and more inclusive by allowing gay and lesbian soldiers to serve honestly and with integrity," he said.
Representative Mike Pence of Indiana, the No. 3 Republican in the House, accused Democrats of trying to use the military "to advance a liberal social agenda" and demanded that Congress "put its priorities in order."Like John McCain, Congressman McKeon naturally only cares about the alleged "diss" of the straight troops, and doesn't give a flying flunderton about the "diss" of the LGB troops that is DADT.
Other Republicans said the military was a unique institution and its rules sometimes had to differ from civilian society.
"We are dissing the troops, that is what we are doing," said Representative Howard P. McKeon of California, senior Republican on the Armed Services Committee.