According to the report, more than two-thirds of military service-members and spouses surveyed felt allowing openly gay members would have no negative impact on armed forces readiness and cohesion. The strongest opposition to repeal comes from the Army’s ground units, as well as the Marines, according to the report.
“While a repeal would require some changes to regulations, the keys to success is training,” Gates said. “This can be done without posing a serious risk to readiness.”
The Senate Armed Services Committee is scheduled to hold hearings later this week on the report and its findings. Scheduled to testify are the individual service chiefs, who Gates said still had reservations about repealing the policy during a time of war.
Both Gates and Mullen said they hoped a repeal would come through Congress, rather than the court system. “I believe it would be unwise to push ahead with repeal before more can be done to prepare the force,” Gates said.