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Oklahoma

Bill to reinstate DADT in Oklahoma National Guard shelved in state House

Thursday, February 23, 2012

OKLAHOMA CITY – A bill to reinstate the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy in the Oklahoma National Guard has been derailed by the Oklahoma House of Representatives leadership.

The proposal by state Rep. Mike Reynolds (R-Oklahoma City), would have backdated legal standards to be in the Guard to a time when gays and lesbians could not openly serve in the U.S. military.

Reynolds argued the state is allowed to set its own standards for service in the National Guard and is not required to duplicate standards for the rest of the U.S. military.

The bill would have allowed officials to directly question Guard members about their sexual orientation, and potentially jeopardized nearly $295 million in federal funding for the state because of its conflict with how the military interprets and executes federal law at the national level.

On Monday, shortly before the bill was scheduled for a hearing in the House Veterans and Military Affairs Committee, Speaker Kris Steele (R-Shawnee) reassigned the bill to the Rules Committee, whose chairman Gary Banz (R-Midwest City), said he didn’t plan to hear it.

“Rep. Reynolds’ bill directly violated federal policies and risked the loss of $294 million in annual federal funding to the Oklahoma National Guard,” said Laura Belmonte, chairperson of The Equality Network.

“We are relieved that the brave men and women of the Oklahoma National Guard will not have their readiness compromised by the damage this legislation would have created,” she said.

In the 14 years that “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was in effect, the U.S. government spent an estimated $400 million in administrative, training, and recruitment costs associated with replacing more than 13,000 service members expelled under the policy.

“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was formally repealed on Sept. 20, 2011.

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12 more reader comments:

  1. good

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 7:28pm
  2. idiots…

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 7:29pm
  3. Freaking bigots r trying to bring back dadt….

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 7:30pm
  4. I wonder how many people fought previous wars that were gay…. Oklahoma can eat $h!t

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 7:31pm
  5. How? It would contradict federal law and thus be unconstitutional! SLAM!! BAM!! EQUALITY WINS!!

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 7:37pm
  6. Really?! NOBODY got hurt by the repeal. Nobody’s going to be hurt by the repeal. This is ridiculous.

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 7:40pm
  7. What the $*@% is wrong with these idiots in these states?!

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 7:40pm
  8. Why would anyone “like” this?

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 7:40pm
  9. OKLAHOMA, where the wind goes rushing through the ears.

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 7:49pm
  10. WTF, is going on? So glad it was shelved but…REALLY?!?

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 7:51pm
  11. I’ve really begun wondering about my home state during the past few years since I lived there. I’m extremely glad that the state legislature is finally doing something positive and good for the state!

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 7:53pm
  12. Because they have nothing better to spend taxpayers money on???

    Posted on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 8:36pm