Sen. Mark Udall on DADT repeal: ‘I’m very concerned it might be stripped’

As noted in the post below, very important news broke last night about the Pentagon study on implementing DADT repeal. It will have “minimal” impact. But, that implementation can only happen when the law is gone.

Prospects of repealing DADT in the lame duck session are not looking good. Senator Mark Udall, one of the strongest allies we have in the Senate, is “very concerned.” And, he isn’t hold back about voicing those concerns:

Carl Levin, the Democrat who chairs the Armed Services Committee, told a local paper in Michigan on Tuesday that he wants the defense bill passed and he also wants don’t ask, don’t tell repealed — but Levin added that he did not know whether both things could be accomplished in the lame-duck session.

Other senators fear the repeal could be taken out of the bill.

“I’m very concerned it might be stripped,” says Colorado Democrat Mark Udall, who’s also on the Armed Services Committee. Udall says despite Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ call over the weekend for don’t ask, don’t tell to be repealed, it’s not clear Republicans will let it come to a vote.

“So I have joined with a number of other senators to call on the Senate leadership and others in the Senate to open the floor of the Senate to debate the National Defense Authorization Act and the repeal of don’t ask, don’t tell that’s included in it,” he says.

Udall’s concerns are real, especially in light of those remarks from Carl Levin. Both of those things can be accomplished if the Senate will do its job.

We need to up the pressure on Levin and Majority Leader Harry Reid. The Senate should not adjourn til the Defense bill with the DADT language is passed. I don’t care if Senators are tired and want to go home in early December. They are very well paid and if they have to actually work for a couple more weeks to finish their jobs, well, isn’t that just tough.

Force the hand of John McCain. Make him filibuster the Defense Authorization bill over a policy that is supported by 78% of the American people, including Dick and Liz Cheney. Make him say no to the troops. Play hard ball, Harry Reid.

And, Barack Obama better really step on this one.


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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