After two failed attempts, Congress appears poised to repeal the Clinton-era ban on gays serving openly in the military, with Senate set for a historic vote that could seal a major triumph for President Obama, liberals and the gay community. 

Senators planned a procedural vote Saturday on a bill ending the Pentagon’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy as lawmakers held an unusual weekend session in their race to finish the year’s legislative business.

If at least 60 senators vote to advance the bill as expected, the repeal, which passed the House this week, could win final passage by late afternoon.

Democrats are counting on four Republicans to help them get the bill across the goal line: Sens. Scott Brown of Massachusetts, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe of Maine.

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