Gates: Immediate Repeal Of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Would Have ‘Enormous Consequences’ For Troops

Just a day after a federal judge ordered the military to stop enforcing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates reiterated his belief that abruptly ending the policy would have “enormous consequences” for the troops:

“I feel strongly this is an action that needs to be taken by the Congress and that it is an action that requires careful preparation, and a lot of training,” Gates said. “It has enormous consequences for our troops.”

Gates’ comments suggest that President Obama and DOJ will be under some pressure to appeal yesterday’s broad injunction, despite pleas from Democratic lawmakers to allow the decision to stand.

According to the Advocate’s Kerry Eleveld, at a White House press gaggle this morning, Robert Gibbs said that the courts have demonstrated that the time is ticking on the policy and that Obama believes that repeal most occur in an orderly fashion. “We want the Senate that didn’t act…to act,” he reportedly told Eleveld.

Asked if Obama believed that the policy was constitutional — he had previously indicated that it is — Gates said he and Obama had not discussed the issue.