The Republican U.S. Senator who co-authored DADT and opposed its repeal will retire from the Senate after his term is up in 2016.
U.S. Senator Dan Coats of Indiana has just announced he will not seek re-election next year, when his current term expires. Coats, a three-term Senator, is 71. He first joined the Senate as an appointee, to replace Senator Dan Quayle, who was elected Vice President under George H.W. Bush.
Coats is one of the authors of the discriminatory "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" law that mandated LGBT service members could not serve openly or honestly, causing more than 14,000 of them to be fired from the military. He opposed its repeal.
In 2008, before the law was repealed, there were an estimated 65,000 lesbian, gay, or bisexual current service members in the U.S. military. And today, there are about 15,000 transgender military members currently serving.
Coats votes on the party line over 90 percent of the time. While he did not sign the recent letter sent by Senate Republicans to the leaders of Iran, he has announced he will vote against Loretta Lynch for Attorney General.
Coats opposes same-sex marriage, a woman's right to choose, immigration reform, raising taxes on the wealthy, and Obamacare. He also served as a United States Ambassador to Germany and a Republican Congressman.
"Today I am announcing that I will not seek re-election to the United States Senate," Coats said in a statement, and in a Facebook video, above. "This was not an easy decision. While I believe I am well-positioned to run a successful campaign for another six-year term, I have concluded that the time has come to pass this demanding job to the next generation of leaders."
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