Uncertainty abounds over the defense authorization bills for fiscal 2011, which begins Oct. 1. That’s thanks to planks in the Senate bill that would strike the military’s prohibition of openly gay service members and allow abortions at military hospitals if federal money isn’t used, according to
The office of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says the chamber may consider the bill when the Senate returns Sept. 20.
But Senate Armed Services Committee ranking Republican John McCain opposes the two provisions, and his objection could only be surmounted by 60 Senate votes, necessitating the support of at least one Republican.
Congressional sources tell The Hill that the Senate is unlikely to consider the defense bill until after the November elections. Reid and other Democratic leaders want to focus on jobs and the economy now.
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