President Barack Obama on Thursday
urged senators to make a second attempt during the lame-duck session
to repeal “Don't Ask, Don't Tell.”
The president's appeal came shortly
after Republicans blocked a measure that would repeal the law that
bans gay and bisexual troops from serving openly.
In a statement, Obama said he was
disappointed with the 57-40 vote. But added that “It must not be
the end of our efforts.”
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid
attempted the vote after several moderate Republicans hinted they
might support repeal. Only
Susan Collins of Maine crossed the aisle to vote with all but one
Democrat, West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin. Blanche Lincoln, a
senator from Arkansas who voted against the measure in September,
arrived too late to cast her vote, but told reporters that she would
have voted for repeal.
Obama thanked Collins for her vote.
The measure will face a steeper incline
next year when Republicans regain control of the House and increase
their numbers in the Senate.