McCain sees no ‘problem’ with ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy

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Sen. John McCain, a former Navy officer and war prisoner, on Sunday criticized efforts to repeal the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy for gays in the military, saying President Obama is trying to fix a problem that does not exist.

“We don’t have a problem,” Mr. McCain, Arizona Republican, said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” This is about a “political promise made by an inexperienced president or candidate for president of the United States.”

Mr. McCain, the ranking Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, repeatedly has tried to reserve comment until the completion of a U.S. study on how to implement such a change. Pentagon officials are expected on Capitol Hill on Tuesday to discuss the report.

Mr. McCain also pointed out that U.S. armed forces remain an all-volunteer effort, so American men and women are not forced to serve under conditions they oppose.

“The system is working,” he said.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, South Carolina Republican and also a member of the Armed Services Committee, had a similar point of view.

“There’s no groundswell of opposition [to ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’] from the military,” he said on “Fox News Sunday.”

Sen. Claire McCaskill, Missouri Democrat, said the ban on gays in the military should be lifted to continue the country’s longstanding record of soldiers serving with a “sense of integrity.”

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