The military’s controversial “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy which forces gay, lesbian and trans-gender members to hide their personal lives or face expulsion from the service “is working,” according to Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain.
The Pentagon is expected to release a survey Tuesday that will say most of those serving don’t have strong objections to repealing the policy.
In mid-November, McCain said he rejected that study because it didn’t ask service members whether the policy should be repealed.
“[T]his study was directed at how to implement the repeal, not whether the repeal should take place or not,” McCain said.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates disagrees that there should be a new survey that amounts to a “referendum.”
“I do not believe that military policy decisions — on this or any other subject — should be made through a referendum of Servicemembers,” Gates wrote to McCain in October.
“I think he certainly has a point,” McCain told CNN’s Candy Crowley Sunday.
The Arizona senator believes that by repealing “don’t ask, don’t tell,” the Obama administration is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist.
“I would also certainly say that we should remember where this all started. There was no uprising in the military, no problems in the military with ‘don’t ask, don’t tell,'” McCain noted.
“It’s called ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ If you don’t ask somebody, and they don’t tell,” he said.
“The fact is this was a political promise made by an inexperienced president or candidate for presidency of the United States. The military is at its highest point in recruitment and retention and professionalism and capability, so to somehow allege that this policy has been damaging the military is simply false,” McCain continued.
“So the fact is that this system is working,” he added.
This video is from CNN’s State of the Union, broadcast Nov. 28, 2010.