Thursday, November 18, 2010

DADT repeal to come to a vote?

So. Sen. Harry Reid has promised to bring Don't Ask, Don't Tell repeal to a vote before the end of the year.

I wouldn't like to predict what will happen. On one hand, the repeal measure is attached to the National Defense Authorization Act which needs to be passed pretty soon. (It specifies the budget for the US Department of Defense. It has to be enacted every fiscal year.) On the other, Sen. John McCain has promised a filibuster if DADT repeal is attached to the NDAA. So the Republicans have the power to ensure it doesn't even get to a vote. But what happens if they use that power? The USDD needs its budget.

The people in the Senate are old hands at demand and counter demand, public bluster and private quid pro quo. Who is going to trade what? If this weren't so important for the future of the federal status of queer people, I'd find it all pretty interesting. As it is, though, I feel that weird mix of anxiety, fatalism, cynicism, and hope that US politics inspires in me. Which in turn makes me feel vaguely queasy.

I think I need some fresh air.

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