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Don't Ask, Don't Tell Could Be Reinstated

Just hours after the military suspended its Don't Ask, Don't Tell ban on gay and lesbian soldiers serving openly, the law might once again be enforced .  A three-judge panel yesterday granted a stay requested by the Justice Department "in order to provide this court with an opportunity to consider fully the issues presented."

Judge Virginia Phillips had denied the request on Tuesday, and military recruiters were instructed to accept gay and lesbian applicants, including Dan Choi who immediately applied for reenlistment.

The Advocate's Kerry Eleveld and Andrew Harmon report:

(T)he appeals panel ruled that attorneys representing the Log Cabin Republicans may file an opposition to its stay of the injunction by Monday. "We will be filing a much more detailed opposition to the motion for full stay pending appeal," said White and Case attorney Earle Miller, part of the legal team representing the gay Republican group in the lawsuit.

Chris Geidner at Metro Weekly says this doesn't necessarily mean the military will start enforcing Don't Ask, Don't Tell again:

This does not immediately change the military's policy of not enforcing DADT, as the Oct. 15 guidance from Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Clifford Stanley stated that, while seeking a stay, "the Department of Defense will abide by the terms of the injunction" and stated that "additional guidance" would come if a stay is granted. [The "additional guidance" -- likely reinstituting DADT enforcement -- could come at any time and without warning.]

This also is not a stay of the order that will last through the appeal. This is only a temporary stay granted through the time when the Ninth Circuit can decide -- sometime after the Oct. 25 deadline given to the LCR attorneys to respond to the stay request -- whether to issue a stay pending the outcome of the appeal. The decision will likely come soon after the Oct. 25 submission by LCR because the court will not hear oral arguments in the case and stated in its order that the government will not be allowed to file a reply brief, which would happen in the ordinary course of appellate briefing.

If a stay is granted pending the appeal, however, DADT would likely go back into effect in the interim, as the appeal is not even scheduled to complete the briefing process until the second week of March 2011.

GLAAD encourages the media to continue providing accurate coverage of the effect this law has on our nation's military, and on those who want to serve their country, but have been denied that freedom.

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