Media Statement: Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal Bill Advances in Senate

Media Statement
December 18, 2010

Today, the Senate took a key vote that will lead to the end of the discriminatory "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (DADT) policy that has resulted in the firing of 14,000+ service members. The policy, passed 17 years ago, has forced tens-of thousands more American troops to lie in order to serve their country.

DADT has not been repealed. Today's actions by the Senate simply allows repeal efforts to move forward. A final vote on the bill will occur later today, but the 63-33 vote for cloture all but assures passage of the repeal measure.

Once the bill is signed into law, the President, Secretary of Defense and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff will then need to certify that the repeal should be implemented. Even then, a 60 day waiting period will be need to pass before DADT is truly repealed.

The following is Equality Florida's statement on today's US Senate Vote:

"As a lesbian who left the U.S. Air Force Academy in the midst of anti-gay witch hunts in the mid-80s, the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell is particularly personal." said Nadine Smith, executive director for Equality Florida. "We commend the US Senate and our own Senator Bill Nelson for today's passage of the Don't Ask, Don't Tell repeal measure. I look forward to the not-too-distant day when open service is the law of our nation."


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