Last night the U.S. House voted 234 to 194 to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," giving gays and lesbians the right to serve openly in the military. It was a big step toward making them legally equal to their heterosexual counterparts--you don't have to pretend to be gay to be in musical theater, after all.
Most of the Western Washington reps voted for the repeal, but not Green River Killer-catcher Dave Reichert, R-Bellevue. Reichert's staff hasn't responded for a request for comment on the decision, but it fits his past record. In 2006, he voted for a failed Constitutional Amendment banning gay marriage.
It's all part of the ongoing battle between gays and lesbians who want to be treated as equals, and people who get queasy at the thought of two dudes makin' it. Here's who landed the best hits this week.
* The D-word: "'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' is employment discrimination and there is no place for it anywhere in the U.S. government," says Equal Rights Washington.
* Unlike most Brawl of the Week combatants, Reichert's taking the stealth approach. He's been silent on Don't Ask, Don't Tell. But actions speak louder than words and yesterday, he said "no" when the House clerk called the roll.
The Odds-on Favorite:
Thanks to the DADT repeal passing the House, it's easy to say odds are 1,000 - 1 in favor of the gays. But before we get ahead of ourselves, Reichert's tapping out and letting heavyweight John McCain take over the fight. McCain is threatening a filibuster in the Senate, saying he'll "do everything in my power" to stop the repeal from becoming law.
Sorry, gays, it's one thing to be fighting a conservative Rep. from the Eastside. It's quite another to be fighting those damn Senate procedural rules. The line in Vegas is a much tighter 2 - 1 for the gays.