GOP PREPARED TO FILIBUSTER TROOP FUNDING OVER DADT…. With Democrats likely to add a provision to the Pentagon appropriations bill to end the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, Republicans are moving forward with Plan B: blocking the vote on troop funding.
Senate Armed Services ranking member John McCain said Thursday that he would “without a doubt” support a filibuster if the bill goes to the floor with language that Sen. Joe Lieberman (ID-Conn.) plans to offer as an amendment during today’s markup.
“I’ll do everything in my power,” the Arizona Republican said, citing letters from the four service chiefs urging Congress not to act before a Pentagon review of the policy is complete. “I’m going to do everything I can to support the men and women of the military and to fight what is clearly a political agenda.”
Another Armed Services Republican, Sen. Roger Wicker, also said he would support a filibuster if the repeal language makes it into the version of the bill that goes to the floor, possibly during the post-Memorial Day work period.
Just so we’re clear, consider exactly what Senate Republicans are saying here. The GOP is prepared to refuse an up-or-down vote in the Senate on a bill that funds the troops during two wars because Americans will eventually be able to serve in the Armed Forces, regardless of their sexual orientation. That the policy has been endorsed by the Secretary of Defense and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs — both Republican appointees — is irrelevant.
What’s more, as Dante Atkins added, “The funny part about this whole ordeal? The compromise that the Republicans are threatening to filibuster allows the Pentagon to have the final say in the issue, which is precisely why it is not receiving the broadest support in activist circles. And yet, despite the fact that the Pentagon and the Joint Chiefs get to be the ultimate arbiters of whether the policy is repealed, that’s not good enough for today’s homophobic Republican Party. Today’s Republicans don’t want gay people to be able to serve in the military — even if the Pentagon says it’s okay.”
I seem to recall Republicans screaming that those who oppose funding the troops during two wars are necessarily unpatriotic terrorist sympathizers, aiding and abetting the enemy. Now these same Republicans are boasting about their intention to prevent the Senate from even voting on troop funding.
It’s funny how GOP standards change, isn’t it?