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Rebuffed by Fort Bragg spouses club, lesbian Army wife named base's 'spouse of the year'

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NBC News
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January 25, 2013
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An Army wife, denied full membership at a Fort Bragg spouses club because she's married to a female Army officer, was named Fort Bragg’s 2013 “spouse of the year” Friday after an annual, national vote that spanned nominees from all military branches, NBC News has learned. In the online election held Tuesday, Ashley Broadway captured the Fort Bragg vote “by a country mile,” said Babette Maxwell, founder of Military Spouse magazine and the Military Spouse of the Year award. Ballot totals were not revealed. As one of the 154 base-level winners, Broadway now is eligible to be nominated for Army “spouse of the year. “A lot of people who voted never me met or talked to me or knew me from Adam. I know it was a statement to the Obama Administration, to Secretary (of Defense Leon) Panetta, to Senator (Chuck) Hagel — if he is confirmed (as defense secretary) — to the Pentagon and, really, to America that, yes, she is a military spouse and she needs to be recognized,” Broadway told NBC News. “There are things the government can do right now to make life a hell of a lot easier than what it is currently for those who are in same-sex marriages in the military,” she added. “It was a lot of people saying, ‘Enough’s enough.’ ”