Joe Solmonese DADT Op-Ed in Politico
May 11, 2010
Today Politico published an opinion piece by HRC President Joe Solmonese as hundreds of veterans lobbied their members of Congress on repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." Joe writes:
President Barack Obama promised in his State of the Union address that he would work with Congress and the Pentagon to repeal DADT this year. The nation’s top two defense officials spoke in favor of repeal just a few weeks later. Defense Secretary Robert Gates made clear that a new department study would look into how, not if, the repeal process could be implemented. But despite all this, the path to repeal has become cluttered in ways that only Washingtonians could rationalize. At the core of this delay seems to be a desire by the Pentagon to kick the can down the road and stop a vote on the issue this year. As Gates asserted 11 days ago in a letter to the House Armed Services Committee, nothing should be done until the implementation study is complete in December. The White House’s silence is providing oxygen to those who believe that Congress should not act this year. With the midterm elections looming, vote counts uncertain in the next Congress and the president’s commitment to action this year, pushing a repeal vote to next year is unacceptable.. There is a way to get it done. Congress should repeal DADT this year, and implement it after the Pentagon study is completed. This solution would honor both the president’s promise as well as the Pentagon’s process.