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Houston Voice, No. 1003, January 14, 2000
File 012
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Houston Voice, No. 1003, January 14, 2000 - File 012. 2000-01-14. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. December 15, 2017. http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/7109/show/7087.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(2000-01-14). Houston Voice, No. 1003, January 14, 2000 - File 012. Montrose Voice. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/7109/show/7087

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Houston Voice, No. 1003, January 14, 2000 - File 012, 2000-01-14, Montrose Voice, University of Houston Libraries, accessed December 15, 2017, http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/7109/show/7087.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Houston Voice, No. 1003, January 14, 2000
Contributor
  • Hennie, Matthew A.
Publisher Window Media
Date January 14, 2000
Language English
Subject
  • LGBTQ community
  • LGBTQ people
  • Gay liberation movement
Place
  • Houston, Texas
Genre
  • newspapers
Type
  • Text
Identifier OCLC: 31485329
Rights In Copyright: This item is protected by copyright. Copyright to this resource is held by the creator or current rights holder, and the resource is provided here for educational purposes. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without permission of the copyright owner. Users assume full responsibility for any infringement of copyright or related rights.
Note This item was digitized from materials loaned by the Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM).
Item Description
Title File 012
Transcript HOUSTON VOICE • JANUARY 14, 2000 NEWS 11 Gore backs off pro-gay litmus test' for Joint Chiefs The competition for gay votes in the Democratic presidential primary grew even more complicated last week, as Vice President Al Gore first pledged he would make support for gays in the military a "litmus test" for appointments to the military's Joint Chiefs of Staff, then apparently backtracked from the stand. As Democratic presidential candidates continued their competition for gay votes this week, candidates in the Republican party lined up against allowing gays to serve openly in the military— further illustrating the wide gap between the two parties on many gay rights issues. In a Jan. 5 televised debate in New Hampshire, where they face a critical Feb. 1 primary, both candidates were asked whether they would make support for allowing openly gay service members a "litmus test" for appointing the military's Joint Chiefs of Staff. Gore answered first, explaining he hoped to make progress oil service by openly gay soldiers similar to President Harry Truman's racial integration of the military. "I think that would require those who wanted to serve on the Joint Chiefs to be in agreement with that policy," Gore said. "1 would insist before appointing anybody to the Joint Chiefs of Staff, that that individual support my policy, and yes, I would make that a requirement." Gore said there is a difference between using a "litmus test" for military officials and using them for appointing Supreme Court justices. In the case of military appointments, one is "not interfering with an independent judicial decision," he said. Bradley offered a more nuanced answer, stating that military leaders are expected to follow the orders of the President, the Commander in Chief. 'One of the nice things about military people is they're straight'.—GOP presidential contender Alan Keyes, who chastised his opponents for not calling for a return to a complete ban on gays in the military. Bradley doesn't agree with the concept of litmus tests, but he could not imagine appointing anvone to the joint chiefs who didn't support allowing gays to serve openly, the candidate's staffers later said, according to the New York Times. But faced with immediate outcry from sources ranging from some of his own supporters to military leaders and veterans groups, Gore backed away from his litmus test pledge later in the week—in what his campaign staff called a "clarification" of his position. "I did not mean to imply that there should ever be any kind of inquiry into the personal political opinions of officers in the U.S. military," he told reporters at a hastily convened news conference after a campaign rally at a Des Moines-area high school. "What I meant to convey was I would not tolerate, nor would any commander in chief, nor would any president tolerate orders not being followed," Gore said, insisting he never used the term "litmus test," although it was included in the wording of the question to which he answered "yes." Several former members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, many opponents of gays in the military, told the New York Times Gore's initial pledge was wrong. Military officers certainly execute the orders of the president, but a litmus test beforehand would place an officer in an untenable position saying, 'Do you believe what I believe?" said Gen. Carl E. Mundy, a retired commandant of the Manne Corps. Even Sen. John Kern; a Vietnam veteran campaigning for Gore in New Hampshire, said he disagreed with Gore's pledge, although he generally supports allowing gays in the military. Sen. John McCain, a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, said at a GOP debate in South Carolina that Gore's pledge was "a disgraceful statement," while a Pentagon spokesman offered a reminder that campaign promises don't always translate into action. "Candidates for political office are certainly free to do that and must do that in order to explain their views to the American people," said Rear Adm. Craig Quigley, a spokesman for Defense Secretary William Cohen. "But I would not speculate as to what that mav or may not mean a year from now." Changing the policy will be impossible without Congressional support, President Clinton agreed last week. While Democrats Al Gore and Bill Bradley debated how to appoint military leaders who share their opposition to "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" last week, Republican candidates spoke out in favor of the military's ban on openly gay semcemembers in their own televised debates. Responding to Gore's statement in a debate that he would have a "litmus test" for military appointees to support openly gay service members, Texas Gov. George Bush, currently the parry's front-runner, went so tar as to say he would adopt a "litmus test" requiring that appointees agree to keep gays from serving openly. At the same time, the Republican National Committee said it plans a new TV ad accusing Gore of advocating a policy that would prohibit Gulf War heroes Colin Powell and Norman Schwarzkopf from serving on the joint Chiefs of Staff, looking to exploit Gore's. The ad features shots of soldiers at work, of Powell and Schwarzkopf and ends with: "Call Al Gore. Tell him the only litmus test ought to be for patriotism." The ad will reportedly air in Iowa, New Hampshire and a few other states with early primary dates. —From staff and wire reports
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