At CNN’s Democratic presidential debate on Sunday, host Wolf Blitzer asked the candidates, by show of hands, to say whether they would get rid of the ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ ban on gays in the U.S. military. All eight candidates raised their hands. Over loud audience applause, former senator Mike Gravel shouted, “It should have been gotten rid of 20 years ago.”
In contrast, when Blitzer tonight asked, “Is there anyone here who believes gays and lesbians should be allowed to serve openly in the U.S. military? If you do, speak up now,” there was a deafening silence. No one raised their hands.
Watch both clips back to back:
“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” is weakening our national security. Since the policy was instituted, at least 11,000 servicemembers, hundreds of whom had with key speciality skills such as training in Arabic, have left the military. Currently in the midst of a readiness crisis, the military could attract as many as 41,000 new recruits if gays could serve openly.