Over the weekend the House and Senate voted in favor of a stand alone bill to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." Gays and lesbians in the military no longer have to lie about who they are in order to wear the uniform and defend their country.
Congressman Patrick Murphy of Pennsylvania's 8th congressional district has been a prime mover of this legislation.
Here are a few sources for more information:
"U.S. Rep. Murphy pleased with gay rights victory," by Miriam Hill, Inquirer, 12/18; excerpt:
U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy had just left the Flyers game Saturday when his cell phone rang in the parking lot of the Wells Fargo Center.
"Patrick," the voice on the phone said, "this is Barack."
President Obama was calling to congratulate Murphy on the Senate vote repealing the U.S. military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy, ending a 17-year battle over the role of gays and lesbians in the military.
Opensecrets gives an overview of which groups funded the fight on both sides and also provides an overview of the process the legislation will go through now (there is still more review before a final decision on repeal is made; at the very least is appears that it will take another few months before all is said and done.)
Kudos to Murphy on his work in this regard.