WASHINGTON, D.C., July 22, 2011 ( – Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and President Obama have certified the repeal of the military’s ban on openly gay servicemen. The change to take effect in another 60 days.


The Associated Press reported late Friday afternoon that President Obama has added his signature to Panetta’s, certifying that the repeal would not affect military readiness. This was the final move needed to set the repeal in motion following Congress’s permission in December.

A recently-publicized document from the U.S. military’s top investigative office revealed evidence that the military survey that was pivotal to the repeal decision had been engineered months prior to its release, and was deliberately skewed in later media leaks, to sway Congress despite opposition from combat troops.

While the survey actually found combat troops far more opposed than favorable to repeal, media and Obama administration officials alike consistently portrayed the survey as showing a lack of opposition; federal investigators concluded in April that this was the result of a media spin campaign by highly-placed anonymous sources.

In addition, investigators provided strong evidence that the survey conclusion had been pre-engineered to favor repeal before troops even saw the questions.

Human Rights Campaign president Joe Solmonese lauded the end of the military’s ban on homosexuality, a U.S. protocol going as far back as General George Washington in 1778.

“The end of that shameful time is thankfully near,” said Solmonese in a statement.