Republicans stood strong for tradition today in the Senate with their unanimous vote to uphold “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell,” as U.S. military policy.
Democrats' attempt to repeal "Don't Ask Don't Tell" as an amendment to the defense authorization bill, which would provide nearly $800 billion in defense funding, failed 56-43 as they could not get the 60 votes needed for it to pass. Democrat Senators Blanche Lincoln and Mark Pryor crossed party lines on behalf of upholding the 17-year-old ban signed into law by Former Democrat President Bill Clinton shortly after taking office in 1993. As a procedural move, Senator Harry Reid also voted no in order to bring the issue back to the Senate floor in the future.
"Don't Ask Don't Tell," could come up again during the lame-duck session, but the vote tally today will make it much more difficult, especially if Republicans take the majority in the House come November.
Senate Republicans also upheld the ban on abortion being conducted in military hospitals and blocked a vote on Harry Reid's DREAM Act from taking place.
This is the first time in 48 years the defense authorization bill has not passed before Congress heads into recess.