1 p.m.: A quick selection of media coverage of the repeal vote:
New York Times: Senate Repeal ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’
Washington Post: Senate votes to overturn gay military ban
Politico: Six Republicans push ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ over the top
12:30 p.m.: REPEAL PASSES 65-31. Senator Evan Bayh is acting as president of the chamber. He cautioned the galleries that “expressions of approval or disapproval are not in order.” Then he went on to announce result of the vote: “On the question before us, the yeas are 65, the nays are 31.” In fact, there was little audible reaction to the announcement. The Senate’s now going on to consideration of the START Treaty, a bilateral agreement with Russia on regulating nuclear weapons.
12:28 p.m.: There’s a hiatus in the roll call while the clerk negotiates some business with some of the senators. The floor of the chamber has filled up now—solons milling around waiting for the final votes and the official result to be announced.
12:26 p.m.: Legislative maneuvering and trivia. H.R. 2965 started out in the House as “An Act to amend the Small Business Act with respect to the Small Business Innovation Research Program and the Small Business Technology Transfer Program, and for other purposes.”
12:24 p.m.: Both California senators have cast their votes: Feinstein and Boxer both “aye.”
12:21 p.m.: Still no vote totals posted here, and we’re not keeping track in our weekend blogging venue, but they must be getting close to finishing the second read-through of the roll.
12:19 p.m.: Republican Lisa Murkowki of Alaska—the write-in senator— “Aye.”
12:15 p.m.: John Ensign, Republican of Nevada, and George Voinovich, Republican of Ohio, vote “aye.”
12:12 p.m.: Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, two Maine Republicans who have broken ranks, both vote “aye” — for repeal.
12:10 p.m.: OK, now the clerk is reading the roll of those who have voted so far. The repeal hasn’t passed yet.
12:07 p.m.: One thing you can see on the un-dramatic CSPAN feed is Senator Joe Lieberman, the Connecticut un-Democrat, who has shepherded the repeal measure through the upper house. He’s looking downright ebullient.
12:06 p.m.: It’s true that we haven’t watched an actual rollcall vote in a while, but it appears that most of the Senate is not present for this first read-through. And on the CSPAN feed, anyway, you can’t hear any of the senators respond to their names.
12:05 p.m.: The Senate clerk is now reading the roll for the vote on H.R. 2965, the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.
The U.S. Senate is now finishing debate on a stand-alone measure to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Debate’s going on now (live on CSPAN2. Final vote is scheduled for noon PST.
(Earlier this week, the House passed the stand-alone measure to end the military’s ban on service by openly gay and lesbian troops. If the Senate passes the legislation as expected—supporters of repeal mustered 63 votes for a motion to end debate and move on to the vote—the measure will be going to President Obama. Repeal looks like a done deal.)