Sen. Lindsey Graham Says He Didn't Know Defense Bill He Approved Lifts Military Ban on Sodomy and Bestiality

By Elizabeth Harrington | December 7, 2011 | 5:54pm EST

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.)

( - Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), asked Wednesday if he was aware of a provision in the National Defense Authorization Bill that repeals the ban on sodomy and bestiality in the military, told  “No, I can’t say I was.”

A former military prosecutor and member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Graham joined 92 of his colleagues in voting to pass the 926-page  National Defense Authorization Act, which contains a repeal of an article in the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) that bans sodomy, including engaging in sex with an animal, or bestiality.

The bill passed 93-7 last Thursday.

At the U.S. Capitol, Wednesday, asked Graham: “The Defense Authorization Bill, were you aware of the repeal of the ban of sodomy and bestiality in the military, article 125?”

“No, I can’t say I was,” Graham said.  “But I can, I think I know what the military is getting at there, in light of the change in policy.  But no, I can’t say that I was, so we’ll look at that.” then asked, “And you don’t support that?”

“Well, I gotta -- I want to get DOD’s reasoning.  Okay?  I’m sure it was put in there as a -- as input from the Department of  Defense, I’d like to hear them out,” Graham said. also asked if Graham thought the ban was related to the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, the policy that prohibited gays from openly serving in the military that was ended in September.

“Sure it does.  Sure it does,” Graham said.  “You got the -- you got a United States Supreme Court case, Texas case, talking about consensual behavior with adults. I’m sure that may have some deal to do with it, too.”

If the player does not load, please check that you are running the latest version of Adobe Flash Player.

As previously reported the bill that was first approved by the Senate Armed Service Committee and then approved on the Senate floor, includes a provision repealing the military’s ban on sodomy and bestiality.

Page 174 of the bill includes a provision headlined in capital letters: “REPEAL OF SODOMY ARTICLE.”  Click here to see a PDF of the page.

The provision states: “Section 925 of such title (article 125 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice) is repealed.” Click here to see the language of the provision as posted on Universal Code of Miltary Justice Website.

Article 125 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice says: “(a) Any person subject to this chapter who engages in unnatural carnal copulation with another person of the same or opposite sex or with an animal is guilty of sodomy. Penetration, however slight, is sufficient to complete the offense. (b) Any person found guilty of sodomy shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.”

MRC Store