Yahoo! News has a morning headline titled "How Democrats Lost ‘Don’t Ask’ Repeal." (You can read it here). It focuses almost entirely on the "Don’t Ask" repeal provision and to some degree on the tactics that epitomize Ried’s Senate antics. He takes a defense authorization bill, adds Don’t ask don’t tell, then stuffs amnesty for illegal immigrants into it, and then refuses to allow Republican amendments.
The article, and most of those that I have seen on the subject, all focus on the failure to repeal "Don’t Ask" as if that were actually the point. But this had nothing to with that. It was a tactical political media ploy. Think about it.
Repealing "don’t ask" has support in the Senate. There are more than enough RINO’s to advance the measure. Placing it in a defense funding bill–given that it is related to military policy–is not even far fetched. But Reid then stuffs the unpopular DREAM act in there as well, a measure that creates amnesty for illegal immigrants, when the majority of America is against amnesty and a majority of Republicans are against the DREAM act.
He then refuses to let them submit amendments?
This forces the republicans to balk at the measure, either on parliamentary grounds or because it includes DREAM, guaranteeing that the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t tell is doomed. The press picks up on the more widely accepted social issue, sells it as a republican blockade, and regurgitates it without seriously addressing the larger problem.
Reid didn’t fail at all. This is exactly what he wanted. And the press is carrying his water, just as he knew they would, weeks before an election where democrats are doomed to be relegated to the minority.
And according to Yahoo! News at least, there are no plans to bring this back up anytime soon. So Reid wasn’t looking for repeal, he was looking to dominate a news cycle, re-frame a narrative, and just used one of his favored grievance classes as bait.