McCain: More research needed before repeal of ‘don’t ask don’t tell’
Despite the fact that his wife and daughter have both publicly spoken out against the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy, Senator John McCain suggested on Sunday that more time and research is needed before the Defense Department can confidently lift the gay ban.
The Republican senator said that the Senate should hold off on lifting the ban during the lame-duck session and that the Pentagon should have more time to research whether repealing the policy would interfere with military operations.
McCain's daughter Meghan recently tweeted that she is "a supporter of LGBT rights and [is] against DADT." His wife, Cindy McCain, appears in a video advocating gay rights and publicly denouncing "don't ask don't tell" as a discriminatory gesture that encourages anti-gay bullying. The video, which is sponsored by a California gay rights group, has highlighted the divisiveness of the issue for many Americans, says ABC News.
Cindy and Meghan also appeared together in a web campaign against Proposition 8 for the gay rights group "NOH8."
According to the Washington Post, a Pentagon study group is currently compiling a report for President Obama that's due on December 1. So far the findings indicate that the majority of troops feel that lifting the ban would bring "positive, mixed, or nonexistent" results.
The House already approved the repeal on a conditional basis. Meanwhile, at least 10 senators on either side of the political spectrum have told the Center for American Progress that they are waiting for the results of the study in order to cast their votes on the repeal, reports the news source.
McCain told Phoenix TV station KPNX in October that he would "absolutely…filibuster or stop it [a repeal] from being brought up until we have a thorough and complete study on the effect of morale and battle effectiveness," according to ABC News.
A recent poll found that support for gays serving openly in the military is at an all-time high of 75 percent for Americans.