One year after ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ repeal, Steve King and Tom Latham owe troops, veterans an apology

folder_openNews, Uncategorized

DES MOINES — One year ago today, the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell was implemented, and one year later, the military is as strong as it has ever been. After opposing the repeal and discriminating against our troops, Congressmen Steve King and Tom Latham owe all those who serve an apology today.

Progress Iowa issued the following statement calling on King and Latham to apologize:

“Steve King and Tom Latham owe our troops and veterans an apology today,” said Matt Sinovic, executive director of Progress Iowa. “Those who serve our country deserve our respect, not discrimination. King and Latham should have left military decisions to experts like Republican Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, who said the repeal would not pose a threat to military readiness.”

“One year after the repeal of ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ was implemented, our military is strong and the policy change has been a success. We still face serious issues when it comes to discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered Americans. But one year later, we know that military readiness and equality are not mutually exclusive.”

“King and Latham’s fears should be put to rest one year after the repeal, and we call on them to apologize to the troops and veterans who they discriminated against with their votes in Congress.”



New York Times: One year later, military says gay policy is working

One Year Later: Navy Veteran in Des Moines tells his story

King and Latham Voted Against Repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” Policy That Bans Openly Gay Service Members. On December 15, 2010, King and Latham voted against legislation that would repeal “don’t ask, don’t tell”, the law that bans openly gay men and women from military service. The legislation would require a written certification, signed by the president, the secretary of Defense and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, that repeal is consistent with military readiness and effectiveness. In November 2010, “This can be done, and should be done, without posing a serious risk to military readiness,” Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said. [Roll Call 638, H 2965, 12/15/2010;New York Times, 12/18/10;Washington Post, 11/30/10]

King and Latham Voted Against Repeal Of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.” King and Latham voted against an amendment to the 2011 Department of Defense reauthorization that would repeal the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on military service for openly gay men and women. “It would take effect 60 days after certification by the Defense secretary, chairman of the Joint Chiefs and the president that the repeal is consistent with the standards of military readiness, military effectiveness, unit cohesion and recruiting.” [Roll Call 317, H 5136, 05/27/2010]