Congressman Meehan to re-introduce 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' repeal bill
The Military Readiness Enhancement Act, a bill that would repeal the military’s ludicrous “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” ban on gays and lesbians serving openly will be re-introlduced by Representative Marty Meehan (D-MA) on February 28. The legislation was originally introduced in last Congress and over 120 members of Congress signed on to the bill. A press conference will be held that day:
Congressman Meehan will be joined by C. Dixon Osburn, executive director of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN), as well as by BG Evelyn “Pat” Foote, USA (Ret.), a member of SLDN’s honorary board, and SLDN client and Former Marine Sergeant Brian Fricke, an openly gay veteran of the war in Iraq. Another participant will be an Iraq war veteran from Texas who lost his right leg in combat and will be coming out of the closet publicly at the press conference in his support for the repeal of the law. Other military veterans will also join Congressman Meehan as he announces re-introduction of the bill.
…Since 1993, the Department of Defense has fired more than 11,000 service members under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” On average, 2 -3 people are dismissed under the law every day. According to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) at least 800 of those had skills deemed `mission-critical’ by DoD, including more than 300 linguists, of which at least 55 were proficient in Arabic.
DC-area Blenders interested in live-blogging the event (sadly, I can’t be there) contact SLDN’s Rebecca Sawyer. You’ll receive full press credentials for the event, which will be held at the House Armed Services Committee Hearing Room 2216 in the Rayburn House Office Building.