February 14, 2011

Rumsfeld Becomes Third GOP Defense Secretary to Support End of Gay Ban

Santa Barbara, Calif.- Today, Palm Center Director Aaron Belkin issued the following statement in response to former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld’s comments in support of the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell.” On Friday, Secretary Rumsfeld told ABC News Radio that repealing the ban on openly gay service is “an idea whose time has come.”

“With Secretary Rumsfeld’s statement that the ‘time has come’ to repeal the ban, there are now three Republican Secretaries of Defense – Cohen, Gates, and Rumsfeld – who have come down on the side of allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly. Support for the end of “don’t ask, don’t tell” is unambiguous and transcends party lines. We have now entered the next phase of the repeal process in which certification and implementation should be completed swiftly in keeping with the practices that have been proven to minimize any disruption to the military.” Belkin added that former Vice President and Defense Secretary Dick Cheney stated in 2010 that it was “time to reconsider the policy.”