Thursday, April 16, 2009

Admirable Admiral

Rep. Joe Sestak (D-PA) is a retired Navy rear admiral and the highest-ranking officer to serve in Congress. He told Brian Beutler at TPM that he’s taking the lead on repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.

I went to war with people that, you know, statistics showed from outside groups, that we had a certain percentage that were gay. And you know how can you come home and say “you went to war for my country with me, but you don’t deserve equal rights.”

And so I’ve asked to cosponsor the bill–to be one of the original sponsors of the bill, along with Eric Massa [D-NY] and Patrick Murphy [D-PA]. I don’t know what Ellen Tauscher [D-CA] is going to decide whether just one of the three gets it. I’d like it to be three warriors to show the import of putting this behind us and making it past and open. However, I do understand that there’s only so much on the plate that President Obama can address at one time. I’m supportive, and I think the community will supportive. Let’s address it maybe later this year. But I’m ready to vote for it the moment it comes up. To me this is a non-issue.

I am sure that there will be opponents to the idea of repealing this odious and discriminatory policy, but it’s going to be a daunting task to take on a decorated Navy veteran who says that it’s time for the rule to go.