"Don't Ask, Don't Tell?" Don't ask Obama

Conflicting stories are coming out of the Obama team about when the new administration will seek to overturn the ban on gays serving openly in the military.

By Vincent Rossmeier
Published November 26, 2008 10:25PM (UTC)
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When it comes to the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy regarding gays in the military, it might just be better not to ask the incoming Obama administration about its plans to revoke the ban. Tuesday, Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade wrote that -- contrary to other reports -- President-elect Barack Obama would not delay the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" until 2010. An Obama transition team spokesperson, speaking anonymously, told the Blade that decisions regarding the policy "will not be made before the full national security team is in place."

The Blade article comes just a few days after a Washington Times story alleged that Obama would in fact wait to take up the fight to overturn the ban. Earlier this month, Democratic Rep. Barney Frank also told the Blade that repealing DADT would likely occur only “once Iraq is over.” A congressional vote would be required to overturn the policy. Congress passed the law in 1993, after Bill Clinton tried but failed to allow homosexuals to serve openly.

During the campaign, Obama said that though he sought the repeal of DADT, he wouldn't require members of his Joint Chiefs of Staff to agree with this policy in order to serve in his administration.

Vincent Rossmeier

Vincent Rossmeier is an editorial assistant at Salon.

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