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View Full Version : Don't-Ask Policy Is Halted By Judge



Rockntractor
10-12-2010, 08:58 PM
WASHINGTON—A federal judge ordered the military to stop enforcing the "don't ask, don't tell" law that has been used to discharge gay service members, putting at least a temporary halt to the 17-year-old policy.

Tuesday's order by U.S. District Judge Virginia Phillips in Riverside, Calif., applies across the U.S. and would halt proceedings against service members suspected of violating the policy, which aims to bar openly gay people from the military. The order poses a dilemma for the Obama administration and Democratic leaders in Congress. They want to undo the 1993 law, but Senate Republicans blocked an effort last month to vote on a repeal.

The administration now must decide whether to appeal Judge Phillips's ruling, which establishes by judicial fiat the result Democrats were seeking through legislative action. The Justice Department is generally obligated to defend laws passed by Congress, and an appeal is likely.

Congress is now in recess until after the midterm elections. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.), who favors repealing don't ask, don't tell, has said he wants to bring the issue up during the lame-duck session of Congress after the elections.

Judge Phillips ruled last month that the law violated the constitutional rights of service members. The case was brought by the Log Cabin Republicans, a group that supports gay rights.

Mo>http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703440004575548393832434092.html?m od=WSJ_hpp_LEFTTopStories