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The �Don�t Ask, Don�t Tell� Repeal is Dead in the Senate

The �Don�t Ask, Don�t Tell� Repeal is Dead in the Senate

The Republican-run filibuster won today in the Senate as they halted the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” with a 56-43 vote. The defense bill needed a total of 60 votes to pass in the Senate today. John McCain’s victory is our disgust and fuel to keep moving forward and striving for equality in all parts of our lives – whether it be at home, work or in the military serving openly.

The Republican-run filibuster won today in the Senate as they halted the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” with a 56-43 vote. The defense bill needed a total of 60 votes to pass in the Senate today. John McCain’s victory is our disgust and fuel to keep moving forward and striving for equality in all parts of our lives – whether it be at home, work or in the military serving openly.

Democrats were poised for a fight leading into today’s vote on the Senate floor, but there was hope, even though it was little, that the policy of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” might be repealed. There were a handful of GOP senators from Ohio and Maine on the fence yesterday, but they refused to relocate their stance on the military gay ban when today’s vote came to fruition after all.

Maine senator Susan Collins was on the fence before going into the vote but ultimately sided with the right. "I find myself on the horns of a dilemma," Collins said, explaining that she supported repeal of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy but "cannot vote to proceed to this bill under a situation that is going to shut down debate and preclude Republican amendments." She then called for an agreement that guaranteed a “full and open debate” with senators allowed to file amendments of their own.

Spokesperson for President Obama, Robert Gibbs, commented that the White House is "disappointed" at the Senate vote, "but we'll keep trying." He also said, “The president obviously continues to urge Congress to act, and is working as well with the Pentagon to see this come to fruition.”

Former White House Gay Rights Adviser during the Clinton years, Richard Socarides, had this to say regarding the vote, “The whole thing is a political train wreck. If it was a priority for the Democratic leadership, they would get a clean vote on this.”

The Associated Press reported the following after the ruling.

Senate Republicans have blocked an effort to repeal the law banning gays from serving openly in the military. The partisan vote was a defeat for gay rights groups who saw the provision in a defense authorization bill as their last chance any time soon to overturn the law known as ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’ Democrats fell short of the 60 votes needed to advance the legislation, which authorized $726 billion in defense spending including a pay raise for troops.

Watch the vote in the video below as it played out today.

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Sarah Toce