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A-OK To Be Gay For America: No More 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'

Photo by calvinfleming via LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr
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A historic 65-31 Senate vote approving a bill that repeals the policy of "don't ask, don't tell" on Saturday means that gay and lesbian military personell will be able to serve openly without punishment, once President Obama signs the measure into law next week.

More than 13,500 Americans have been dismissed from military since the law went into effect in 1993, reports the LA Times. Said President Obama, "It is time to close this chapter in our history...It is time to recognize that sacrifice, valor and integrity are no more defined by sexual orientation than they are by race or gender, religion or creed. It is time to allow gay and lesbian Americans to serve their country openly."

While the repeal was initially caught in a partisan crossfire, Democrats moved it to a separate measure that passed the House this week 250 to 174, reports the LA Times. In a test run earlier today, the Senate voted 63 to 33 for repeal showing enough support to advance the bill. Six Republicans joined Democrats on the dry run; Two more came out on the final vote.