House Republicans on Friday showed their disapproval with repeal of “Don't Ask, Don't Tell” at a committee hearing, during which Pentagon leaders said the military would be prepared for implementation by summer's end, CNN reported.

Clifford Stanley, the undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness, told members of a House Armed Services subcommittee that “Implementing repeal embodies that view of total force readiness – more simply put – it is about respect. … no matter their race, color, creed, religion or sexual orientation.”

“My focus is total force readiness, caring for our people and creating a culture of relevance, effectiveness and efficiency,” Stanley said.

After a bitter debate last year, Congress approved and President Barack Obama singed into law a bill that repeals the Clinton-era law that bans gay and bisexual troops from serving openly. But implementation won't begin until 60 days after Pentagon leaders and the president certify that the military is ready for the change.

Republicans on the panel criticized the move, embracing the view that repealing the policy at a time when the nation was at war was a mistake.

Missouri Rep. Vicky Hartzler called the change “radical.”

“I'm very concerned that in a time of war … that we are making such a radical major shift in our policy,” she said.

After the Obama administration announced it would no longer defend in court the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), a law that bans federal agencies from recognizing the marriages of gay and lesbian couples, because the administration believes parts of the law are unconstitutional, Hartzler sponsored a bill that would force it to do so.

Rep. Mike Coffman of Colorado said open gay service would undermine the military mission.

“I think this is a political decision obviously made by the executive branch and the military will follow it under whatever circumstances and ramifications it has to the combat effectiveness to our forces,” Coffman said.

Freshman Rep. Austin Scott of Georgia predicted an exodus of troops from the military.