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House Speaker Newt Gingrich today said Republicans intend to dismantlePresident Clinton's "don't ask, don't tell" policy for gays in the military, reverting to the old outright ban on homosexuals. Gingrich plans to make the change in the defense authorization bill, which usually goes to the House floor in the summer. Gingrich believes the ban is "the correct position," although it has been ruled unconstitutional by federal judges. Last week, a federal judge also ruled that the Clinton Administration's "don't ask don't tell" policy is unconstitutional, because it impinges on free speech.TIME defense correspondent Mark Thompsonsays military leaders would rather see the courts define the policy instead of having it hashed out on the floor of the House. "Gingrich's natural allies aren't eager for this battle," says Thompson.