The Supreme Court has turned down a request by a gay rights group to temporarily suspend the military’s controversial “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy banning openly gay service members, CNN reported Friday.
The Log Cabin Republicans filed an emergency request with the high court to reverse a federal appeals court decision allowing the military to continue the policy while the Justice Department appeals a lower court ruling that found the law to be unconstitutional. In a brief order issued Friday, the justices allowed the policy to remain in effect until the appeals process is completed.
The judicial battle over the issue comes as some Senate Democrats are vying to vote to repeal the policy during the lame-duck session that kicks off next week.
President Barack Obama, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Senate Democratic leaders have thrown their support behind repealing the policy as part of the defense authorization bill when it comes to a vote in the coming weeks. But Armed Services ranking member John McCain (R-Ariz.) has vowed to filibuster the bill unless the provision is stripped out.
The House passed its repeal of the policy earlier this fall.
Leaders from military and veterans service organizations joined Sens. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., Kelly Ayotte , R-N.H., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., at a press conference to urge the Senate to replace a provision in the budget proposal that cuts retirement benefits for veterans. Wicker, Ayotee, and Graham earlier called for a bipartisan solution to replace the $6.3 billion in cuts to military retiree benefits.
Each year since 1990, CQ Roll Call has reviewed the financial disclosures of all 541 senators, representatives and delegates to determine the 50 richest members of Congress. This year's report, derived from forms covering the calendar year 2012, shows it took a net worth of $6.67 million to crack the exclusive club.