Republican leaders in Congress are talking about new ways of putting the brakes on repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” after top military brass repeatedly told a House committee hearing they “don’t know” how welcoming open homosexuality in the ranks will affect combat readiness.

Though Congress last year repealed the 1993 “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy in the military, open homosexuality in the ranks won’t officially be permitted until after the president, secretary of defense and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff certify that implementation of the change “is consistent with the standards of military readiness, military effectiveness, unit cohesion and recruiting and retention of the armed forces.”

At a full House Armed Services Committee hearing earlier this month, however, those “standards” came into question, as U.S. military leaders wilted under demands from congressional members to justify repeal of the policy.

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