Gates agrees to release DADT report early — by one day

I can’t figure out if we’re getting played here — if everyone is doing just enough to make it look like they’re cooperating, but, in reality, there’s no real strategy to pass the DADT language in the Defense Authorization bill. Cause that’s how it feels.

Via Josh Gerstein:

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates has agreed to move up by one day the release of a Pentagon report on implementing a repeal of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy that has governed the military for 17 years, a spokesman said Sunday night.

“Secretary Gates is pushing all involved in the Comprehensive Review Working Group’s report to have it ready for public release on November 30th in order to accommodate the desire of the Senate Armed Services Committee to hold hearings as soon as possible,” Pentagon Press Secretary Geoff Morrell said in a statement e-mailed to reporters.

The November 30th date amounts to a one day acceleration of the report, which had initially been planned for release in early December. Last week, the Pentagon committed to a December 1 release. However, gay rights groups and several senators who support repeal of the congressionally-mandated ban on openly gay servicemembers had asked Gates to get the report out as quickly as possible. Until Sunday, the Pentagon had rebuffed those requests.

Still feels like a rebuff to me. One day early doesn’t seem like a major concession. But, then again, every day matters between now and when Congress adjourns if the DADT language is going to pass.

Last spring, when it became clear that there was momentum for DADT repeal this year, the White House should have told the Pentagon to release the study on September 1st. It could have been done. But, the White House had no intention of crossing Secretary Gates. Now, look at the mess they’ve created.

One more time I’m going to post this paragraph from an article that appeared last week in The New York Times:

Leaders of the new House Republican majority have indicated that repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell” is not a priority for them, making it unlikely they would approve the bill again. That means if the repeal language is not approved by the end of this year, it will be effectively dead.

The Pentagon study became an excuse for many Senators. But, hey, it’s coming out one day early now.


On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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