- Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal Act of 2010
Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal Act of 2010 Enacted by the 111th United States Congress Citations Codification
- Introduced in the House of Representatives as H.R. 2965 by Patrick Murphy on December 14, 2010
- Committee consideration by: Committee on Science and Technology (Subcommittee on Technology and Innovation)
Committee on Small Business
- Passed the House on December 15, 2010 (Yeas: 250; Nays: 175)
- Passed the Senate on December 18, 2010 (Yeas: 65; Nays: 31)
- Signed into law by President Obama on December 22, 2010
Major amendments Relevant Supreme Court cases None
The Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal Act of 2010 (H.R. 2965, S. 4023) is a landmark federal statute that establishes a legal process for ending the Don't ask, don't tell (DADT) policy (10 U.S.C. § 654), which since 1993 prevented openly gay and lesbian people from serving in the United States Armed Forces.
Provides for repeal of the current Department of Defense (DOD) policy concerning homosexuality in the Armed Forces, to be effective 60 days after the Secretary of Defense has received DOD's comprehensive review on the implementation of such repeal, and the President, Secretary, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) certify to the congressional defense committees that they have considered the report and proposed plan of action, that DOD has prepared the necessary policies and regulations to exercise the discretion provided by such repeal, and that implementation of such policies and regulations is consistent with the standards of military readiness and effectiveness, unit cohesion, and military recruiting and retention.
The Act did not replace DADT with a ban on discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in the military, as provided for in the proposed Military Readiness Enhancement Act.
President Barack Obama, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen provided the certification required by the Act to Congress that on July 22, 2011. Implementation of repeal was completed 60 days later, so that DADT was no longer policy as of September 20, 2011.
Originally the Democratic leadership in both the House and Senate intended to end the "don't ask, don't tell" policy with an amendment to the Defense Authorization bill. However, the defense bill failed to clear a Republican filibuster in the Senate due to objections of the procedures from which the bill was being debated. In response, Senator Joe Lieberman introduced the stand-alone repeal bill in the Senate, and Congressman Patrick Murphy introduced the same bill in the House.
The Act was passed by the House of Representatives on December 15, 2010, with a vote of 250 to 175, and by the Senate on December 18, 2010, with a vote of 65 to 31. President Barack Obama signed the bill into law on December 22, 2010.
Senate roll call
State Senator Party Vote on
Hawaii Daniel Akaka Democratic Aye Aye Tennessee Lamar Alexander Republican No No Wyoming John Barrasso Republican No No Montana Max Baucus Democratic Aye Aye Indiana Evan Bayh Democratic Aye Aye Alaska Mark Begich Democratic Aye Aye Colorado Michael Bennet Democratic Aye Aye Utah Robert Bennett Republican No No New Mexico Jeff Bingaman Democratic Aye Aye Missouri Kit Bond Republican No No California Barbara Boxer Democratic Aye Aye Ohio Sherrod Brown Democratic Aye Aye Massachusetts Scott Brown Republican Aye Aye Kansas Sam Brownback Republican No No Kentucky Jim Bunning Republican Did not vote Did not vote North Carolina Richard Burr Republican No Aye Washington Maria Cantwell Democratic Aye Aye Maryland Ben Cardin Democratic Aye Aye Delaware Tom Carper Democratic Aye Aye Pennsylvania Bob Casey, Jr. Democratic Aye Aye Georgia Saxby Chambliss Republican No No Oklahoma Tom Coburn Republican No No Mississippi Thad Cochran Republican No No Maine Susan Collins Republican Aye Aye North Dakota Kent Conrad Democratic Aye Aye Delaware Chris Coons Democratic Aye Aye Tennessee Bob Corker Republican No No Texas John Cornyn Republican No No Idaho Mike Crapo Republican No No South Carolina Jim DeMint Republican No No Connecticut Christopher Dodd Democratic Aye Aye North Dakota Byron Dorgan Democratic Aye Aye Illinois Dick Durbin Democratic Aye Aye Nevada John Ensign Republican No Aye Wyoming Mike Enzi Republican No No Wisconsin Russ Feingold Democratic Aye Aye California Dianne Feinstein Democratic Aye Aye Minnesota Al Franken Democratic Aye Aye New York Kirsten Gillibrand Democratic Aye Aye South Carolina Lindsey Graham Republican No No Iowa Chuck Grassley Republican No No New Hampshire Judd Gregg Republican Did not vote Did not vote North Carolina Kay Hagan Democratic Aye Aye Iowa Tom Harkin Democratic Aye Aye Utah Orrin Hatch Republican Did not vote Did not vote Texas Kay Bailey Hutchison Republican No No Oklahoma Jim Inhofe Republican No No Hawaii Daniel Inouye Democratic Aye Aye Georgia Johnny Isakson Republican No No Nebraska Mike Johanns Republican No No South Dakota Tim Johnson Democratic Aye Aye Massachusetts John Kerry Democratic Aye Aye Illinois Mark Kirk Republican Aye Aye Minnesota Amy Klobuchar Democratic Aye Aye Wisconsin Herb Kohl Democratic Aye Aye Arizona Jon Kyl Republican No No Louisiana Mary Landrieu Democratic Aye Aye New Jersey Frank Lautenberg Democratic Aye Aye Vermont Patrick Leahy Democratic Aye Aye Florida George LeMieux Republican No No Michigan Carl Levin Democratic Aye Aye Connecticut Joe Lieberman Independent Aye Aye Arkansas Blanche Lincoln Democratic Aye Aye Indiana Richard Lugar Republican No No West Virginia Joe Manchin Democratic Did not vote Did not vote Arizona John McCain Republican No No Missouri Claire McCaskill Democratic Aye Aye Kentucky Mitch McConnell Republican No No New Jersey Bob Menendez Democratic Aye Aye Oregon Jeff Merkley Democratic Aye Aye Maryland Barbara Mikulski Democratic Aye Aye Alaska Lisa Murkowski Republican Aye Aye Washington Patty Murray Democratic Aye Aye Nebraska Ben Nelson Democratic Aye Aye Florida Bill Nelson Democratic Aye Aye Arkansas Mark Pryor Democratic Aye Aye Rhode Island Jack Reed Democratic Aye Aye Nevada Harry Reid Democratic Aye Aye Idaho Jim Risch Republican No No Kansas Pat Roberts Republican No No West Virginia Jay Rockefeller Democratic Aye Aye Vermont Bernie Sanders Independent Aye Aye New York Chuck Schumer Democratic Aye Aye Alabama Jeff Sessions Republican No No New Hampshire Jeanne Shaheen Democratic Aye Aye Alabama Richard Shelby Republican No No Maine Olympia Snowe Republican Aye Aye Pennsylvania Arlen Specter Democratic Aye Aye Michigan Debbie Stabenow Democratic Aye Aye Montana Jon Tester Democratic Aye Aye South Dakota John Thune Republican No No Colorado Mark Udall Democratic Aye Aye New Mexico Tom Udall Democratic Aye Aye Louisiana David Vitter Republican No No Ohio George Voinovich Republican Aye Aye Virginia Mark Warner Democratic Aye Aye Virginia Jim Webb Democratic Aye Aye Rhode Island Sheldon Whitehouse Democratic Aye Aye Mississippi Roger Wicker Republican No No Oregon Ron Wyden Democratic Aye Aye
Following the signing of the bill into law by U.S. President Barack Obama, the Department of Defense will commission a committee, led by Clifford Stanley, which will itself commission a comprehensive review of current policies, the repeal and whether the newer status quo will be consistent with the goals of, in the words of Robert Gates, "military readiness, military effectiveness, unit cohesion, and recruiting and retention of the Armed Forces." The reception of the review by Gates, Adm. Mike Mullen and President Obama will begin the 60-day waiting period for the Department of Defense, after which the detailed reforms will be incrementally implemented through a potential variety of initiatives in a top-down direction.
It is not known if ongoing or future discharges of openly gay or bisexual service members will cease upon Obama's signature, after the 60-day period following the reception of the comprehensive review, or at some later point. The law is expected, by the Department of Defense and supportive legislators, to result in full implementation within the military structure by the end of 2011.
It is also not known exactly how Section 925 of the United States Code (also known as Article 125 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice)—the ban on sodomy among service members—will be affected by the repeal of Section 654. Because Section 925 is considered a sodomy law which is not entirely subject to the civilian-applicable Supreme Court ruling against sodomy laws in Lawrence v. Texas, 925 can still technically be applied in a prosecutorial setting against service members accused of same-sex sexual intercourse, even though the section does not explicitly mention same-sex relations in its letter. The repeal of 654, which explicitly refers to a prohibition against homosexual and bisexual service members and was reformed by the 1993 congressional law, will likely open the possibility for future military-applicable judicial proceedings on the legality of 925. Analysts, such as David Rittgers of the Cato Institute, have called for the harmonization of Section 925 in regards to any sexual behavior which is perceived as disturbing the discipline and good order of the armed forces. In addition, the report by the Pentagon on the results of the survey included a recommendation for the repeal of Article 125 in order to accommodate "consensual sodomy".
On January 28, 2011, the Pentagon rolled out a more definitive plan for implementation of the integration of openly LGB military personnel. It calls for a three-month period of training, to begin in Q3 2011, for all personnel, describing three mandatory levels of training for troops, commanders, administrators, recruiters and others:
- The first level of training involves requiring administrators and other leaders to answer detailed questions about the new policy.
- The second level requires senior officers to enforce the policy and observe for any feelings of unease among servicemembers.
- The third level consists of the general training of all troops, which is expected to be the most difficult portion due to the wide geographic distribution of troops.
After the training period is completed, the president and his military advisors must sign to a certification which confirms the ability of the military to accept the integration of openly-LGBT personnel. Sixty days after the certification is signed, the DADT Repeal Act will take effect as law. 
President Obama, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen sent Congress the required certification on July 22, 2011. Full implementation of the repeal occurred on September 20, 2011, 60 days later.
Refusal of compensation
On the same day as the roll-out of the plan for DADT repeal training, the Department of Defense issued a memo stating that it would not offer any sort of compensation, including separation pay, for those discharged under DADT. As of December 2010, those discharged under the charge of homosexuality are due half of the separation pay due to other honorably discharged servicemembers. The American Civil Liberties Union said the memo was linked to Collins v. United States, a case it filed against the DoD in November 2010 seeking full compensation for those discharged under the policy.
- ^ a b Wilgoren, Debbi; Backon, Perry Jr. (2010-12-22). "Obama to sign DADT repeal before big, emotional crowd". Washington Post. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/12/22/AR2010122201888.html. Retrieved 2010-12-22.
- ^ a b "Obama signs bill repealing 'don't ask, don't tell' policy". Associated Press. Los Angeles Times. 2010-12-22. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-naw-dont-ask-repeal-20101222,0,4220844.story. Retrieved 2010-12-22.
- ^ "H.R.2965 - Dont Ask, Dont Tell Repeal Act of 2010". OpenCongress.org. http://www.opencongress.org/bill/111-h2965/show.
- ^ Carl Hulse (December 18, 2010). "Senate Repeals ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’". New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/19/us/politics/19cong.html?hp.
- ^ Roll call vote 279, via Senate.gov
- ^ Roll call vote 281, via Senate.gov
- ^ Robert Gates (December 18, 2010). "News Release". United States Department of Defense. http://www.defense.gov/releases/release.aspx?releaseid=14154.
- ^ David Rittgers (December 17, 2010). "House Bill Repeals DADT the Right Way". Cato @ Liberty, Cato Institute. http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/house-bill-repeals-dadt-the-right-way/.
- ^ Johnson, Jeh Charles; Ham, Carter F.; Biscone, Gregory A.; Oostburg Sanz, Paul L.; Ferguson III, Mark E.; Benning, Scott A.; Ginsberg, Daniel B.; Zilmer, Richard C. et al. (November 30, 2010) (PDF), Report of the Comprehensive Review of the Issues Associated with a Repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”, Department of Defense, p. 139, http://www.defense.gov/home/features/2010/0610_gatesdadt/DADTReport_FINAL_20101130(secure-hires).pdf, retrieved 2010-12-22, "Article 125 of the UCMJ treats all acts of sodomy, heterosexual, homosexual, consensual, or otherwise, as punishable conduct. In Lawrence v. Texas, the Supreme Court held that private consensual sodomy between adults cannot be considered a crime. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces reached a similar conclusion in the military context in the case United States v. Marcum. In light of these decisions, we recommend that Article 125 be repealed or amended to the extent it prohibits consensual sodomy between adults, regardless of sexual orientation. The other prohibitions considered punishable under Article 125, including forcible sodomy, sodomy with minors and sodomy that is demonstrated to be 'service discrediting' (e.g., in public or between a superior and subordinate), should remain on the books."
- ^ LOLITA C. BALDOR AND PAULINE JELINEK (Wednesday, January 26, 2011; 5:51 PM). "Pentagon to outline training for gay ban repeal". Associated Press via Washington Post. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/26/AR2011012605711.html.
- ^ "Defense Department Says It Will Deny Full Separation Pay For Gay And Lesbian Service Members Honorably Discharged Under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”". American Civil Liberties Union. January 29, 2011. http://www.aclu.org/lgbt-rights/defense-department-says-it-will-deny-full-separation-pay-gay-and-lesbian-service-members.
- ^ "Collins v. United States - Class Action for Military Separation Pay". American Civil Liberties Union. November 10, 2010. http://www.aclu.org/lgbt-rights/collins-v-united-states-class-action-military-separation-pay.
- Bill Summary & Status - 111th Congress (2009 - 2010) - H.R.2965
- In Historic Move, Senate Votes to Repeal "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell" - video report by Democracy Now!
- Invocation delivered at Presidential Signing Ceremony for DADT Repeal, December 22, 2010.
- Rhode Island College LibGuide - Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal
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precedentsState amendments banning same-sex unions (Defense of Marriage Act) · Hate crime laws in the United States (Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act) · Sodomy laws in the United States (Lawrence v. Texas)
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