About this new administration talking point to delay DADT repeal for ‘years’

Seldom have we seen so quick and so massive a repudiation of a promise by a President in front of nearly 50 million Americans on live TV.

We now have two reports that the Pentagon is planning to take “years” to figure out if and when we should repeal Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.

Years. Like until Obama’s “next term,” assuming he has one? Assuming the economy is back in shape. Assuming the wars are over. Assuming we don’t have a new war with Iran. Assuming, assuming, assuming.

It’s clear that the Pentagon has no intention of following through on President Obama’s promise. The President told us, flat out, almost a year ago that DOD was already working on the repeal. And now we find out they haven’t even started thinking about it yet. So, that would mean either President Obama and his spokesman Robert Gibbs lied to us, repeatedly, or the Pentagon ignored their commander in chief when he told them, repeatedly, to start working on this problem.

Joe reported on this earlier today. And now we’re seeing even more news stories talking about it’s going to take “years” to figure all of this out. That means there’s a coordinated campaign going on to slow this thing down until it dies, and to flat out repudiate the promise the President made to all of us on national television just three nights ago.

The only remaining question is whether the President is a party to this utter slap in the face to gay and lesbian Americans, gay and lesbian members of the armed services, gay and lesbian Democrats, and every single one of our allies, or whether the US military, and President Obama’s own administration, are going rogue in direct insubordination of the President, and he just can’t handle keeping his own staff under control.

Either option isn’t pretty.

SLDN has already called the President on this BS repeatedly. The Human Rights Campaign has yet to stand up to the President, and in fact, repeatedly gives him political cover by praising his actions, and then blaming the Congress. HRC did however put out a fundraising appeal, right after the SOTU, in which they again put the onus on Congress, and didn’t even mention the President’s role in any of this, when it’s the President and his Defense Department who are the biggest current impediments to doing anything at all on this issue. (The Washington Post says the total cost of their planned campaign is $2mil.) Here’s part of HRC’s email:

Dear Friend,

Tell Congress to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” this year.

Make sure they got the message – echo President Obama’s call for action.

Tell Congress to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” NOW.

In his State of the Union address just moments ago, President Obama pledged to work with the Congress and military this year to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT).

With the President’s leadership, now it is up to Congress to act. We’re rolling out a new strategic campaign to do exactly that – put an end to the discriminatory law that’s forced thousands of lesbian and gay members of the military to lie about who they are or face losing their jobs.

We’ve spent months designing a plan to pass legislation which repeals DADT. The plan will include organizing veterans across the country, generating media coverage in key markets and building focused campaigns in targeted states that will be critical to securing the final votes in the House and Senate.

First step: pushing legislation through the House by building a well-spring of support from representatives, while laying the groundwork for a critical fight in the Senate.

Help us capitalize on the President’s pledge tonight by asking your representative and senators to move quickly to repeal DADT.

The President’s leadership? He made a speech. A good speech, and I praised it, but it was one freaking speech. He isn’t leading on this issue. And ENDA and DOMA don’t exist for the man. He’s letting the Defense Department torpedo the entire effort to repeal the ban, like they always do. And HRC doesn’t think it’s necessary to mention that he’s part of the problem, that he plays a role, in addition to Congress?

President Obama is the commander in chief of our military. Congress won’t lift a finger to help us until the Defense Department gets in line. The only person who can get DOD in line is the boss of the DOD, that would be the President of the United States.

It’s time for HRC to speak up. Does Joe Solmonese think it’s acceptable to have yet another study of the military ban? Does Joe Solmonese think it’s acceptable to delay this process “years”? Does Joe Solmonese really believe that what we are now seeing from President Obama on DADT is “leadership”?

I’m getting really tired of our lead gay rights group being AWOL when we need them the most. We cannot win this battle, or the now-disappeared battles for ENDA and DOMA, unless HRC is willing to stand up to our President when this kind of BS comes to light. Where is HRC?

Don’t Ask, Don’t Give. The only way Democrats are going to learn that gay and lesbian voters, and our friends and family, can’t be taken for granted, is by refusing to be taken for granted. Don’t give to the DNC, the President’s re-election, or Organizing for America until the Democrats keeps their promises on DADT, ENDA and DOMA.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

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