It is not unusual for political spouses to disagree with their husbands. (Laura Bush, famously, was in favor of gay marriage and pro-choice.) It is, however, unusual for a political spouse to shoot a public service announcement that seems to publicly call out her spouse on the eve of a vote about Don’t Ask Don’t Tell in the military. See below.
Cindy McCain says, “Our political and religious leaders tell LGBT youth that they have no future. . . They can’t serve our country openly.” This is strong stuff. She is not just saying that the military policy on gays is bad policy, but she is suggesting that it is directly tied to suicides among gay youth.
McCain has notably backtracked on his position on Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. He once said he was only waiting for the military leadership to support abolishing the policy. “The day that the leadership of the military comes to me and says, ‘Senator, we ought to change the policy,’ then I think we ought to consider seriously changing it,” he said in 2006. Leadership does now support the change, but McCain says he will filibuster any attempt to include the change in legislation this year.
UPDATE: On Nov. 12, Cindy McCain tweeted this non sequitur. “I fully support the NOH8 campaign and all it stands for and am proud to be a part of it. But I stand by my husband’s stance on DADT.”
McCain appeared a few days later on Meet The Press to call for more hearings on the topic.