Last night, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) responded to his daughter Meghan’s claim that Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell is the civil rights issue of her generation by reiterating the Marine Commandant’s opposition to repeal and suggesting that his son Jimmy McCain — who was a Marine — also opposes lifting the ban:
KING: You mentioned the commandant of the Marine Corps, Senator, I ask this next question not to be disrespectful, but because I know you as someone who takes the long trips, who does the research, who talks to the troops, as well as their bosses. You mentioned the commandant of the Marine Corps, he is against this. Your son has been in the Marines, he has served on the front lines. And this is a often a generational issue. Older Americans have a harder time with this than sometimes younger Americans. What does your son think about this?
MCCAIN: You know, my son is now out of the Marine Corps. The proudest moment of his life is having serving in the Marine Corps. His words to me, as so many thousands of others’ words have been to me, it isn’t broke, don’t fix it.
KING: So he wants to keep it just in place as it is right now?
MCCAIN: They believe that it is working and I’m very reluctant to discuss my children’s views.
Interestingly, McCain didn’t say he would filibuster the measure, as his daughter predicted, although Republicans can still try to undermine the measure by calling for amendments or insisting that they will not vote for START if the DADT measure comes up for a vote. Supporters of repeal, however, as well as Senate aides, believe that they do have 60 votes to move forward.
In an appearance on Washington Journal this morning, Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA) disputed that notion, predicting that cloture would not be granted. “I think it will be at the top of the agenda when we come back in January,” he added.
SLDN has announced it will stage a sit-in in the Senate gallery until DADT repeal is passed.