In conjunction with the 14th anniversary of the signing of the military policy banning gays and lesbians from serving openly in the US military, Human Rights Campaign has asked the leading Democratic presidential hopefuls, “If you are elected President, what concrete steps would you take to overturn ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell?'”

Each day this week, one statement will be posted on the HRC Back Story blog at www.hrcbackstory.org. Former Senator John Edwards started things off on Monday by saying, “gay men and women have continually served our country with honour and bravery and we should honour their commitment and never turn away anyone who is willing to serve their country because of their sexual orientation.”

Statements from Senators Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, Chris Dodd, Barack Obama and Governor Bill Richardson will be posted today through to Saturday.

“Over the course of the next six days, those vying to be our nation’s next President will answer a question that has concerned the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community for 14 years-how they plan to dismantle ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,'” HRC President Joe Solmonese said.

“Public opinion polls show that Americans do not support this discriminatory policy, which has served only to dishonour the brave, patriotic service of 12,000 men and women.”

HRC also is launching an advertising campaign around the candidates’ statements, encouraging the LGBT community to visit www.hrcbackstory.org and learn more about where candidates stand on the issue of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

Chrys Hudson © 2007 GayWired.com; All Rights Reserved.