Posted this a few minutes ago at AMERICAblog Gay as “BREAKING” news. It is a major development. The Senate could take a vote on the Defense bill today. In September, Senator Pryor(D-AR) voted on the wrong side. Just last week, he told an Arkansas newspaper that he would not vote for any bill that repealed Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (while also noting his belief that being gay is a sin.) But, he’s on board with DADT repeal now.
Here’s the statement from Pryor’s office:
On many previous occasions, I have said that I would oppose repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell until I had heard from our servicemen and women regarding this policy. I have now carefully reviewed all of the findings, reports, and testimony from our armed forces on this matter and I accept the Pentagon’s recommendations to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. I also accept the Secretary of Defense and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs’ commitment that this policy can be implemented in a manner that does not harm our military’s readiness, recruitment, or retention. We have the strongest military in the world and we will continue to do so by ensuring our troops have the resources necessary to carry out their missions. Therefore, I support the 2011 Defense Authorization Act that passed the Senate Armed Services Committee and will support procedural measures to bring it to a vote this year.
We still need a couple of Republicans, but this feels like momentum. It’s conceivable that all the Democrats could vote for cloture now. That puts enormous pressure on Senators Susan Collins and Scott Brown. This is their moment: Equality or some bogus procedural argument.