President Obama Urged to Respond to 'Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Letter
Hastings Urges President Obama to Respond to June 22 ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Letter
(Ft. Lauderdale, FL) Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-Miramar) sent the following letter to President Barack Obama regarding a June 22 letter he sent with 76 of his colleagues on “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” The White House has yet to respond to the letter urging President Obama to suspend the investigation and discharge of service members in the Armed Forces because of their sexual orientation. Under the discriminatory law of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” openly gay and lesbian service members and those suspected of “homosexual conduct” may not serve in the military. (Please find below and attached a copy of the letter. Additionally, please find attached a copy of the letter sent on June 22.)
August 27, 2009
The Honorable Barack H. Obama
President of the United States
The White House
Washington, DC 20500
Dear President Obama:
On June 22, I sent you a letter signed by 77 Members of Congress urging you to take leadership in working together with Congress to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and to replace it with a policy of inclusion and non-discrimination. More than two months later, I have yet to receive an official response.
I am deeply disappointed that you have not responded to my letter and that we are not addressing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell at this time. With the recent addition of 17,000 American troops to Afghanistan and the possibility of another request for even more troops from General McChrystal in the coming weeks, I am sure that you will agree that we cannot afford to lose any of our dedicated, highly-qualified service members to Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.
As you know, we lose approximately two service members every day to Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. While I commend Secretary Gates and the Pentagon’s general counsel for their continued efforts to identify possible provisional measures, you can take action right now. I sincerely hope that your administration will make Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell a priority and do everything in its power to repeal this ridiculous, bigoted law once and for all.
Mr. President, I am extremely proud of the men and women who serve in our Armed Forces and truly appreciate the countless sacrifices they continue to make every single day to protect this nation and the American people. They deserve better than Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.
Please know that I will continue to monitor this situation closely and stand ready to assist you and my colleagues in Congress in repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell today.
Alcee L. Hastings
Member of Congress
Congressman Alcee L. Hastings is Vice Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, a senior member of the House Rules Committee, and Co-Chairman of the U.S. Helsinki Commission.