Both are up for a vote today, and both will be filibustered:
In his State of the Union address in January, President Obama repeated a campaign-trail promise to the gay community.
By the end of the year, Mr. Obama said, he would seek a full repeal of the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, which bars gay and transgender people from serving openly in the armed forces.
The president called it a “law that denies gay Americans the right to serve the country they love because of who they are,” and he said repealing it was “the right thing to do.”M
The promise faces a critical test today as supporters of the current policy say they will try to filibuster military defense legislation that includes the repeal. With midterm elections just six weeks away, a unified Republicans filibuster would likely mean a delay in fulfilling the president’s pledge until next year.
Opponents of an unrelated immigration measure included in the annual defense authorization bill are also vowing to filibuster, increasing the odds that both issues will be put off.
If the Democrats can’t muster 60 votes to cut off debate, the delay on “don’t ask, don’t tell” would be a blow to gay activists, members of a key White House constituency who fear that next year’s Congress will be less sympathetic to a repeal of the 17-year-old ban. The policy was enacted during President Bill Clinton’s first term.
I doubt President Snowe or Collins will come through, although Scott Brown might flinch. McCain, being all mavericky, has flip-flopped so many times I have no damned clue which way he will vote. And, of course, if we do get a republican to vote for cloture, that means President Nelson can hold up the Senate for some sweetheart deal for the real Murrikens in whatever shitty flyover state he represents.
Also, it goes without saying that any failure to have these two items passed is not the fault of the troglodyte bigots who blocked the bills or the dysfunctional Senate rules that always seem to call for a supermajority when the President is a Democrat, but Obama for failing to use the bully pulpit.