The plan to save the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell in the lame duck sessions is continuing apace. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi just announced on Twitter that tomorrow the House will take up a standalone repeal measure co-sponsored by Majority Leader Steny Hoyer and Iraq War vet Rep. Patrick Murphy (D-PA).
If the House passes the measure, it will be the second time this year that the body has voted to end the military’s ban on openly gay servicemembers. Back in May, the House passed a defense spending bill that included language repealing the ban. That measure stalled in the Senate last week when the vast majority of the Republican caucus declined to vote for cloture, leaving the bill stuck. Supporters of repeal in the Senate are preparing their own standalone measure they hope will get necessary votes to move ahead.
That process should be sped up somewhat by the House bill if it passes. If the Senate can pass a standalone measure identical to the one coming out of the House, the bill can go straight to the president’s desk for signature, thus making it more likely that repeal can get done in the final days of the lame duck session.
But the path to passage in the Senate is not assured. The legislative calendar in the chamber is jam-packed with legislation Democrats and the White House want to pass before the Republicans elected in November are sworn in next month. Senate leadership has said that repealing DADT is an important goal, but just one of many they have before the Senate adjourns.
In her tweet, Pelosi echoed the support she’s given repeal throughout the entire Congressional session.
“Action on #DADT is long overdue,” she wrote.