In a statement today, Senator-elect Pat Toomey announced his support for a repeal of the military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy. Here is the statement in it’s entirety:
Following the House of Representatives vote to repeal Dont Ask Dont Tell, Senator-Elect Pat Toomey issued the following statement supporting repeal and supporting a Senate vote at the appropriate opportunity on the Senate calendar.
”As I’ve said previously, my highest priority is to have the policy that best enables our armed services to do their job,” Senator-Elect Toomey said. ”Our civilian and professional military leadership have now spoken and said we should repeal Dont Ask Dont Tell. I would support a free-standing measure to do so.”
Toomey’s announcement comes as the Senate prepares to take up the measure, one day after the House passed a similar bill authored by PA Rep. Pat Murphy. Senate Republicans have almost universally opposed repeal in recent weeks for varying reasons, ranging from ideological to parliamentary.
Maine Senator Susan Collins was the only Republican to vote for the repeal last week, which was included in a larger defense bill. Even moderate Senators such as Scott Brown of Massachusetts voted against repeal, citing the need to vote on an extension of the Bush-era tax cuts before any other Senate business.
Toomey had previously voiced support for repeal, pending a review by the military.