Majority Of Americans Continue To Support Repeal Of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell
One day before the Pentagon releases its long anticipated report on the repeal of the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy, a new poll shows that a majority of Americans support repealing the policy:
Most Americans (58%) say they favor allowing homosexuals to serve openly in the armed forces. Fewer than half that number (27%) oppose allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly.
These opinions have changed little in recent years. Since 2005 – including three surveys this year – roughly 60% have consistently favored permitting homosexuals to serve openly in the military. There is greater support for permitting gays to serve openly today than there was in 1994, after President Clinton put in place the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. In July of that year, 52% said they favored allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military while 45% said they opposed allowing this.
The national survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press and the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, conducted Nov. 4-7 among 1,255 adults, finds continuing partisan and religious differences in opinions about whether to permit gays and lesbians to serve openly in the nation’s armed forces.
Large majorities of Democrats (70%) and independents (62%) favor allowing gays to serve openly. Republicans are divided (40% favor, 44% oppose). Among conservative Republicans, far more oppose than favor allowing gays to serve openly (52% to 28%).
Only about four-in-ten (38%) Republicans and Republican leaners who agree with the Tea Party favor allowing gays to serve openly while 48% are opposed. Among those who disagree with the Tea Party or have no opinion of the movement, 52% favor letting gays serve openly and just 30% are opposed.
Tomorrow’s report is expected to show that a majority of active duty soldiers also support repealing the policy and that the transition to allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly will not be nearly as difficult as critics suggest. So, now, the ball is in the Senate Republicans court. It’s up to them to decide if they’re going to do the right thing, or play partisan politics