Re-elect Dan Lipinski Congressman

LIPINSKI VOTES AGAINST REPEAL OF “DON’T ASK, DON’T TELL” POLICY, SAYS WE SHOULD HEED MILITARY’S CHIEFS OF STAFF AND ALLOW PENTAGON STUDY TO BE COMPLETED

(May 28, 2010) Today, Congressman Dan Lipinski (IL-3) issued the following statement regarding his vote against repeal of the 1993 law commonly referred to as "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

"In making my decision, I heeded the views stated this week by Commandant of the Marine Corps General James T. Conway, Army Chief of Staff General George W. Casey Jr., Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Gary Roughead, and Air Force Chief of Staff General Norton A. Schwartz. As the chiefs of the branches of our military, each spoke of his strong support for allowing the comprehensive review of the implications of repealing the ‘Don't Ask, Don't Tell' policy to be completed before any legislative action is taken. The review process established by Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates takes a systematic approach to evaluating ‘any impacts to military readiness, military effectiveness and unit cohesion, recruiting/retention, and family readiness that may result from repeal of the law.' Before voting on this issue, I believe Congress ought to have had the benefit of considering the report resulting from that review, which is due on Dec. 1. It is notable that General Conway, General Casey, Admiral Roughead, and General Schwartz were united in indicating that to act before the review is completed would send an unwelcome signal to our men and women in uniform regarding the importance of their input. Indeed, an ‘essential' and ‘critical aspect' of the review, according to Secretary Gates, is the gathering of the views of ‘a range of age, rank, and warfare communities.' In voting yesterday on this important question, I believe Congress acted hastily, ignored the clear and considered advice of our top military commanders, and showed a regrettable disregard for the opinions of the men and women who risk their lives for our nation on a daily basis. The American people have made it clear: Congress should listen before it acts."



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