Sen. Reid schedules Saturday cloture vote on “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal

December 16, 2010 at 7:31 pm 54 comments

By Adam Bink

Just this evening, Sen. Reid filed cloture on DADT repeal, paving the way for a Saturday vote. Video:

The time period delay is because the cloture motions have to “ripen” or “mature” (one of the quirky parts of the Senate) for a few days until the vote can be taken. On Saturday, the Senate will vote first on the DREAM Act (on which Reid also filed cloture), and if it does not pass, will proceed immediately to a vote on DADT repeal. If the cloture vote, which requires 60 votes to pass, succeeds, then there will be 30 hours of debate until the final vote. The 30 hours can be waived if DADT repeal opponents agree to do so, but that remains to be seen.

Also, concerns that Sen. Wyden would miss the votes because of impending surgery are lessened, as he announced he would make both votes. There is a concern, though, that because Scott Brown said he would only support cloture if tax AND government spending legislation were enacted, and Reid just pulled the omnibus spending bill from the floor for lack of support, that Brown may not come through. However, Collins, Murkowski and Snowe haven’t (so far) made any such conditions, so we may still have 60 (and perhaps more, as Lieberman has hinted).

This is very good news, though, as he’s perhaps listened to Sen. Lieberman’s call today to put repeal ahead of the new START treaty. This is a wiser move on the merits.

So, stay tuned for a busy Saturday, and perhaps an early one for those of you on the West Coast. I’ll be up and Adam (rimshot!) blogging the coverage as usual.

Update: I should clarify that the above schedule assumes the DREAM vote will fail. If it passes, they go 30 hours of debate, have a final vote on the DREAM Act, then vote on cloture for DADT repeal, go 30 hours, vote. So, a vote on DADT repeal could come as early as Saturday depending on what happens with the DREAM Act, but it could also be Sunday.

Update 2: To answer another procedural question, the 30 hours encompasses time for consideration, not just debate. E.g., if they go into quorum call and everyone just mills about, that counts against the 30 hours. So do motions, parliamentary inquiries, etc. So don’t expect 30 hours of Senators talking non-stop with the clock stopping and starting.

Update 3: Another question on amendments. Under Senate Rule XXII, amendments have to be filed by 1 PM on the day following the filing of the cloture petition. E.g., 1 PM tomorrow. It appears that Reid filled the amendment tree has been filled so no hostile amendments at all (read: fun and games from Sen. McCain) will be allowed. You can motion to suspend Rule XXII and allow late amendments, etc., but that requires 67 votes to pass and is unlikely. So, it looks like we’ll be fine on the poison pill amendment front.

Entry filed under: Don't Ask Don't Tell.

This is puzzling “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” cloture vote and the story on amendments

54 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Michelle Evans  |  December 16, 2010 at 7:37 pm

    Can only hope this is the beginning of the end.

    • 2. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 16, 2010 at 7:39 pm

      a longer finish line for you Michelle… : / but glad Dream Act being considered too…hoping! subs.

    • 3. Bob  |  December 16, 2010 at 7:57 pm

      Michelle, the Canadian military is now drafting policy for assisting transexuals to make the transition with full assistance ,,,,,,,,, I am only beginning to realize thanks to you, the significance of that,,,, how huge a thing, actual assistance through the process….. assistance…..allowing nature to take it’s course,,,

      • 4. Carpool Cookie  |  December 18, 2010 at 4:29 pm

        Jeepers! Hadn’t even thought of when and how that would happen! INTERESTING! I guess that will be the new NOM rally cry after gay marriage is settled….”Stop the trannies!!”

  • 5. Kathleen  |  December 16, 2010 at 7:42 pm

    This is exciting news. And thank you, Adam, for following this so closely and helping us all to understand the process, as always. :)

    • 6. StraightForEquality  |  December 16, 2010 at 7:45 pm

      I agree!

      • 7. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 16, 2010 at 7:52 pm

        yes, MANY THANKS Adam : )

        • 8. Ann S.  |  December 16, 2010 at 8:35 pm

          Thank you, Adam!

          • 9. adambink  |  December 16, 2010 at 8:45 pm

            You’re welcome, cheers.

  • 10. Straight Ally #3008  |  December 16, 2010 at 7:44 pm

    Glad Sen. Wyden will be present, and I wish him well as he goes through surgery.

  • 11. JonT  |  December 16, 2010 at 7:46 pm

  • 12. Bob  |  December 16, 2010 at 7:47 pm

    adda boy Adam,,,, actually you get a bunch of adda boy’s for this ,

    cloture,,, I think this bill has matured and ripened and is know beyond it’s due date,,, ho ho DADT has got to go…..

  • 13. Jenny  |  December 16, 2010 at 7:57 pm

    Glad there is a set date and this time with actual hope for getting the necessary votes. But sadly, this weekend is mine to work, so I’ll be away from my TV/Computer all day. Will keep my phone close though and get updates sent to it.

  • 14. Bob  |  December 16, 2010 at 8:03 pm

    Gregory, thinking of you and hubby, with the dream act coming up,,,,,, wow what a nail biter for you,,,,, would be so nice to be surprized,,,,,,,,,,DREAM ACT

    • 15. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 16, 2010 at 9:24 pm

      thanks Bob : ) doesn’t seem so likely BUT some chance…and would delay DADT some. P.S. My Grandparents are (were, both passed…) Canadian Citizens. I used to visit them in B.C. “Pemberton”. I’ve wondered sometimes how to move to Canada…been exploring possible options…

      • 16. Bob  |  December 17, 2010 at 1:01 pm

        Gregory, really Pemberton , that’s just a short drive from Whistler, host of the olympic downhill ski events, that is such beautifull country,,,,

        And mother nature is pretty good to us in this corner of Canada, Vancouver has got to be one of the most amazing cities,,,,,at sea level, warm beaches and sand in the summer, in winter, the snow stays up on the top of the mtn, the closest of which is half and hr, if you want to play in it , snowboard or ski but downtown you don’t have to shovel, just carry use rain gear…..

        wonder if having Canadian grandparents helps in the immigration process……

        I know there are more than a few American gay couples living on Salt Sping Island, the majority of those being what we call the A list, meaning (having endless access to money) I’m not on that team, but sometimes we cross over at local events…..

        I would live in the mtns, like Pemberton area, but my hubby has anxiety which increases the further he lives from the city action… he’s in Vancouver right now for a weekend of fun dancing, and shooting pool, in the gay village,,,, me I’m fine to be at home, planted some bulbs yesterday, One of the really cool things about living in a small community is access to elders, our gatherings include people in their eighties and nineties, they have so much wisdom to share,,,,,

        Check out Salt Spring, it was voted in one of those gay publications as one of the top out of the way spots for vacation, meaning it’s totally gay friendly but not commercialized so it’s more on the rustic but friendly side…. come for a visit…..

  • 17. Sagesse  |  December 16, 2010 at 8:03 pm

    Let the games end, already, and the legislating begin.

  • 18. Ronnie  |  December 16, 2010 at 8:13 pm

    This whole having their votes pending blah blah blah is getting on my last nerve….If you support repeal of DADT then you vote yes…don’t give excuses…just vote yes…use some logic…here I’ll simplify it for you…..”I support repeal of DADT” = Aye….now was that so hard?.. <3….Ronnie

  • 19. Javaman  |  December 16, 2010 at 8:42 pm

    So I am sitting here reading this site and my neighbor rings the bell. For the last two years he and his wife have come and sang carols. Last year under the cookies they slipped me a mormon dvd. So just now they came to the door with cookies and a piece of some paper wrapped up.

    So I say I am so sorry I don’t want to be a bad neighbor but last year you gave me a dvd. I am sorry but I can’t except your cookies or information it’s not what I believe. I said I am sorry but it’s just not what I believe.

    Can’t help but wonder if he will ask what I believe or just send his little boys on their bikes.

    It is the season to spread love, and as my 10 year old explained to me God dosen’t care if your gay he just cares that you love and love the one your with.

    oh ya I straight, ya sorry NOM my gay parents of 46 years raise a straight kid and a pastor at that.

    • 20. SF Bay  |  December 16, 2010 at 9:12 pm

      I love that. Except I know I wouldn’t be so nice to the mormons. they don’t deserve it.

      • 21. anonygrl  |  December 17, 2010 at 6:27 am

        There is where you are wrong. EVERYBODY deserves it, until they, personally, prove otherwise. There are many Mormons who are our allies, who stand against the church’s policy, and you should not paint them all with the same brush.

        • 22. Richard A. Jernigan  |  December 17, 2010 at 6:33 am

          Thank you anonygrl! For us to paint all LDS members with the same brush is using the same tactics they use against LGBT people. We are not all aloike, so we should not paint any other group with a brush that covers all members of that group.

          • 23. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 17, 2010 at 6:44 am


    • 24. Ed Cortes  |  December 17, 2010 at 7:22 am

      When they came to our door, I simply told them that “My husband and I are not religious”. Then I watched them think about it for a moment and saw the light go on.

      “Democracy is 2 wolves and 1 sheep voting on what to have for lunch”.

      and ‘scribin’

    • 25. Bob  |  December 17, 2010 at 2:02 pm

      @Javaman, loved the story, thanks for sharing, that’s what I call brining the fight home,,,, standing up where you are, having done so puts you in position to take some heat or answer some questions…… this is such a necssary part of our process, specifically with the religious right,,,,

      we have to become visible to them, and not in a Meagan McCain way, but we have to be able to say this is who I am and I do not accept your position against me…..

      Meagan, need cloture,,, i.e. to ripen, mature, in her awreness of what her sexual orientation means to her as a person, this is of course most difficult for those who feed off the teet of bigoted hatefull parents, for status wealth etc. which blunts, or compensates their willingness to take a stand…

      If I had a father like McCain, I would make it real personal, I’d make him choose between his beliefs and his daughter. simple…. the batttle eventually has to be fought on that ground,,, with the religious right.

      We can no longer be silent while we sit in a church pew, pretending to be the perfect family, while we listen to hate speach from the pulpit,,

      Meagan is right this is her generations human rights battle, , sooner or later she will have to make a personal choice who she is really cheer leading for…….

  • 26. Lodi Gal  |  December 16, 2010 at 8:48 pm

    Thanks so much for the info. I’ll stay connected all day Saturday. Fingers crossed there is something to celebrate. This is long, long overdue.

  • 27. AndrewPDX  |  December 16, 2010 at 9:06 pm

    W00T! Showing my age here, but I can’t help think of the Chicago hit Saturday in the Park… I’ve been waiting such a long time for Saturday.

    [I’d embed a bid of the song here, but that’s a pain to do on my phone]

    Liberty, Equality, Fraternity

    • 28. Kate  |  December 16, 2010 at 9:17 pm

      Andrew! Where’ve you been???

      • 29. AndrewPDX  |  December 17, 2010 at 7:38 am

        :) ive been mostly in lurked status; they removed external Internet connections @ work, and my PC @ home is on the fritz, so I only get my P8TT fix on my phone, and the mobile version of this website doesn’t work with subscribing to comments.

        Liberty, Equality, Fraternity

      • 30. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 17, 2010 at 8:32 am

        Hi Andrew! Hi Kate! I would ask the same of you Kate…”where have you been?” You seem quieter since return from Africa….((HUGS)) Gregory

    • 31. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 16, 2010 at 9:20 pm

      Here you go Andrew : ) “can you dig it” this one’s from 1972…

    • 32. Richard A. Jernigan  |  December 17, 2010 at 6:35 am

      Here you go, Andrew. I have loved that song since it came out. And I was nine at the time.

  • 33. adambink  |  December 16, 2010 at 9:18 pm

    A few updates above about timeline, procedure, amendments, folks. Off to bed and will check in on more questions in the morning, leave them in the comments.

  • 34. Dave  |  December 16, 2010 at 11:01 pm

    I hope DADT is repealed.

    My biggest problem with the DREAM act is it punishes people who come here by legal means. I know people who attended HS here on a VISA and are going to college here and when they are done with college unless they find a company willing to hire them and go through the VISA process they will be deported. They have no pathway to citizenship regardless have home many decandes they have been here. The DREAM act will seal that forever and deny them any chance of being an American.

    • 35. BK  |  December 17, 2010 at 4:56 am

      Whatever the future of the DREAM act, the whole entire immigration system needs a major fix. That’s undeniable, yet somehow very little (if anything) gets done! It’s so frustrating. And with an incoming Republican Congress (a Republican House, a close Senate) not much is likely to be done about it. Not to pre-judge the newcomers, but given their party affiliation…

      • 36. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 17, 2010 at 5:55 am

        Utah is on the verge of adopting “Arizona-like laws” with one particular politician (Sandstrom) pushing for extreme measures. So several businesses have formed an “immigration compact” in opposition.

        Also I’ve been following/attending various “Dream Act Vigils” in hopes this will get passed.

        There have been similar vigils of students across the country. Pam’s House weighs in on this:

        There was a very excellent conversation on msnbc called “Beyond Borderlines Town Hall Meeting” on this issue….its a WONDERFUL discussion…this short segment features the VOTA BUS “Alfonso” as an antagonist…and he still seems ridiculous to me:

        Love and Light to all! Gregory

        • 37. anonygrl  |  December 17, 2010 at 7:29 am

          To the folks in Utah, who are church members who support the harsher immigration laws, I would just like to point out that the story of Soddom and Gomorrah was about punishing people who were inhospitable to strangers,

          Not to mention that while Jesus never said word one about homosexuality, he was clearly and verbally and repeadedly specific with his views in favor of taking care of neighbors and strangers.

          • 38. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 17, 2010 at 7:44 am

            I had not heard that until watching “For the Bible Tells Me so” I enjoyed that movie VERY much…but the one part I was unsure about is the “inhospitable to strangers” part. It sounds nice, but unfamiliar to me and couldn’t find much scholarly info to validate. Any good materials anonygrl you know about I could study? (ps- Good Morning!)


        • 39. Dave  |  December 17, 2010 at 7:44 am

          I just wish they would allow any persn who meets the requirement in the dream act to become a U.S citizen, not just those who originally came here illegally.

          • 40. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 17, 2010 at 7:59 am

            Looking forward to Star Trek Utopia where money, class & race differences are not factors. So many people are suffering while too many Americans are being hateful and discriminating towards anyone “different”…Hoping for better laws…glad immigration issues are being discussed openly. Best wishes to everyone seeking a better life!

          • 41. Kathlene  |  December 17, 2010 at 7:36 pm

            That’s true. Extending the dream act to cover foreign exchange students who can’t find jobs fast enough would be a great idea.

  • 42. Leo  |  December 17, 2010 at 12:10 am

    It appears that Reid filled the amendment tree

    Which amendments did he fill it with, then?

    • 43. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 17, 2010 at 6:02 am

      Me wonders the same…. ?

    • 44. adambink  |  December 17, 2010 at 7:21 am

      There’s no clear way of discerning that at the moment.

  • 45. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 17, 2010 at 6:12 am

    OT – Obama vs. Palin

  • 46. Richard A. Jernigan  |  December 17, 2010 at 6:19 am

    I will be up and at it, also. We will be sending every thought we can send in addition to all our phone calls to help get DADT repealed.

  • 47. Paul  |  December 17, 2010 at 7:27 am

    So the law gets repealed, and it’s back to the original status in the military: no gays. They should let this go to the courts so that they can get a nice judicial opinion on discrimination and a timeline to fix things. What happens after congress repeals? Nada, nothing; or worse, a return to the previous policies with a Republican congress in session for the foreseeable future. I think the Republicans are playing this perfectly: Let it win by a vote or two in the senate, then sit back and let the military do what it wants (nothing) on a claim a miltary readiness or whatever…..

    • 48. WeTheSheeple  |  December 17, 2010 at 7:50 am

      The law does NOT go back to the outright ban before DADT. This in not just a repeal of the DADT directive signed by Clinton. If you read the bill, it actually makes the necessary changes to the underlying law (Title 10 Sec 654) and the UCMJ and other military policy to ensure that gays CAN serve openly and with full equality (within the limits of DOMA).

      • 49. Paul  |  December 17, 2010 at 8:12 am

        Maybe you should read it. It requires no action, and even specifically suggests that no changes to the UCMJ might be necessary. The bill has no teeth. It’s arguably a setback. That would explain why public support of repeal by republicans, is so high. Think about it; do you think war-mongering republicans would be in support of anything that the democrats would propose to change the military?

        This bill is going to pass over the feigned disappointment (See, e.g., Charles Krauthammer’s feigned disappointment over the extension of tax cuts) of republicans. Both dems and repubs are playing the LGBT community like fiddles, and they cheer about it.

        • 50. DebbieC  |  December 17, 2010 at 8:42 am

          I’m glad I’m not the only one who sees that. This bill is a mistake and will ultimately do us harm. Its not going to accomplish what people think it will. The only way to get DADT resolved completely and in a timely manner is the courts. They are playing politics with our lives and we’re going to regret it.

          • 51. Gregory in Salt Lake City  |  December 17, 2010 at 9:53 am

            Hey Legal Eagles, what do you say about this? How does the fact a judge has already ruled DADT is unconstitutional?

      • 52. DebbieC  |  December 17, 2010 at 10:41 am

        Without the “certification” – which can be put off indefinitely, and without any real recourse, DADT will not end regardless of any bill passed. There will always be a “reason” and excuse why equality cannot be fully implemented.

        • 53. Bob  |  December 17, 2010 at 1:16 pm

          point taken, wondering , we have the written copy of the bill, why has there been no calls for disection of it, and questions as to what the wording actually says,,,,,

          anyone want to give it a go,,,, does the bill get us where we want, in my read I understood it to make thos changes necessary to the underlying law,,,, but timelines seem open

          anyone want to read the bill and comment????

    • 54. Bob  |  December 17, 2010 at 1:48 pm

      @Paul, what exaclty is your stand on the process going forward to the senate re the stand alone bill..

      are you saying we should derail that process, are you saying it’s passage would actually do more harm than good…

      are you a NO vote on the stand alone bill?????


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