Lieberman: Looks like the GOP has the votes to block the DADT repeal

Gay rights advocates went on high alert Thursday afternoon after Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), a key proponent of repealing the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, said that he believes Senate Republicans can kill the defense authorization bill containing the repeal c– a step Sen. John McCain has already threatened to take.

“The question is whether the Senate leadership can negotiate an agreement with the Republicans that will allow the bill to come up and get them to feel that they can introduce amendments that they want to introduce as well,” Lieberman said in an interview with Kerry Eleveld of the Advocate, a web site and magazine for the gay community. “But until that happens, I don’t think the votes are there to break the filibuster, which would be a shame.”…

“It’s crunch time. It will shock a lot of people if we can’t get 60 votes to end “don’t ask, don’t tell,” after all this effort,” said Richard Socarides, a White House adviser to President Bill Clinton on gay issues. “There are some Democrats who may be soft on this but the thinking has always been that you pick up the moderate, pro-equal rights Republicans.”