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.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.