BY Michelle Garcia

August 28 2009 8:35 PM ET

Florida representative Alcee Hastings told President Barack Obama he is "deeply disappointed" that the military's ban on openly gay and lesbian personnel has yet to be lifted.

Hastings sent an open follow-up letter to the president on Thursday, reminding him that in June, 77 representatives called for a moratorium on investigating cases of service members accused of being gay. He also called "don't ask, don't tell" a "ridiculous, bigoted law."

The Florida Democrat, who is the vice chairman of the Intelligence Committee, said he was also disappointed that President Obama had not responded to the initial letter. "With the recent addition of 17,000 American troops to Afghanistan and the possibility of another request for even more troops from General McChrystal in the coming weeks, I am sure that you will agree that we cannot afford to lose any of our dedicated, highly qualified service members to 'don't ask, don't tell,'" he wrote in Thursday's letter.

Hastings cited the figure of two military members being discharged daily under the law.





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