Congressman Patrick Murphy on Tuesday
lost his bid to continue representing the people of Pennsylvania's
Eighth Congressional District.
Republican rival Mike Fitzpatrick
declared his victory on Tuesday night.
“Today we take America back,” he
told a crowd of supporters, the Montgomery News reported.
“I am incredibly humbled,” he
added. “I won't let you down.”
Murphy, a military veteran who served
in Iraq, led
the fight to repeal “Don't Ask, Don't Tell,” the 1993 law that
bans gay and bisexual troops from serving openly, when he took
over as lead sponsor of the House bill that repealed the ban. The
measure was first introduced by Ellen Tauscher before she was tapped
by President Obama for a top post in the State Department.
“Tonight the House of Representatives
and our country lost a bright, capable young leader,” Aubrey
Sarvis, executive director of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network
(SLDN), the largest group lobbying for repeal of the policy, said in
“SLDN will forever remember and be
grateful for Patrick's remarkable leadership in the fight to repeal
DADT, and I have no doubt Patrick Murphy will be back to serve this
nation again. We appreciate his long and extraordinary service to
The House voted in May to repeal the law
that has ended the military careers of over 13,000 gay service
members in May, but a September vote on a similar measure was dealt a
blow in the Senate by a Republican-led filibuster. SLDN is urging
the Senate for a second vote during the chamber's upcoming lame duck