DADT report will be released tomorrow as lame duck schedule presents a major impediment

During the White House press briefing, Robert Gibbs responded to questions about the Pentagon’s DADT study from Chris Johnson from the Washington Blade:

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs on Monday confirmed that Obama was meeting the Joint Chiefs of Staff in the Oval Office to discuss “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and the Pentagon report on the matter.

“I think the president right now is in the Oval Office meeting with the Joint Chiefs about the issue and about the report,” Gibbs said in response to questioning from the Blade. “We look forward to the presentation by [Defense] Secretary [Robert] Gates and [Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff] Adm. [Mike] Mullen tomorrow and then their testimony later in the week.”

Gibbs said he believes the president has seen “parts of” the report on “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” which is due for release Tuesday. Still, Gibbs said he would need to double-check whether Obama has indeed seen the study and doesn’t “want to ahead of” the release of report “in terms of commenting.”

The Obama administration agreed to the schedule for the Pentagon’s DADT report. The geniuses in the White House wanted it released after the midterms, hence the December 1st release date. Given the time crunch in the lame duck, Secretary Gates magnanimously agreed to release the report one day early. You do recall that on April 30th, Gates told Congress in a “strongly worded letter” that he didn’t want any votes on DADT repeal before the report was released. That provided a key talking points for opponents of repeal. Now, timing is the enemy. Unless things move seamlessly in the Senate over the next few weeks (and that never happens), passage of the DADT language is in big trouble.

The President really needs to step up his game here. He’s meeting with Congressional leaders tomorrow, but the President did not list the Defense Authorization bill as one of his priorities, according to The Hill. We need to put pressure on the President. Sign our letter to Obama, which asks him to start calling Senators, here.

And, via SLDN, Senators need to hear from all of us, too. If you live in any of these target states (or contributed to any of these Senators), call them:

UPDATED LIST: KEY SENATORS WHO NEED TO HEAR FROM REPEAL SUPPORTERS NOW:

–Harry Reid (D-NV);

–Susan Collins (R-ME);

–Olympia Snowe (R-ME);

–Mark Pryor (D-AR.);

–Blanche Lincoln (D-AR)

–Richard Lugar (R-IN);

–Judd Gregg (R-NH);

–Scott Brown (R-MA)

–George Voinovich (R-OH);

–Kit Bond (R-MO);

–Joe Manchin (D-WV)

–Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)

–Mark Kirk (R-IL)

–James Webb (D-VA)

ACTION ALERT BY REPEAL ADVOCATES: http://bit.ly/dBKRcd

The Capitol switchboard is 202-224-3121.




AMERICAblog Gay

—  admin

Court Sets Schedule for Prop. 8 Oral Arguments

Prop 8 Signs x390 (Getty) I Advocate.com2010 11 16Court Sets Schedule for Prop. 8 Oral Arguments Posted on Advocate.com falsetrueNews390pxtruefalse1200AMfalsefalseBy Advocate.com Editors Advocate.com EditorsPLEASE DO NOT USE THIS FIELD FOR NOW.PLEASE DO NOT USE THIS FIELD FOR NOW. The U.S. court of appeals for the ninth
Advocate.com: Daily News

—  admin

Reid to Schedule Vote on ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Next Week

The Washington Blade reports that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will schedule a vote on defense legislation containing repeal of the Military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy next week:

Reid"A senior Democratic leadership aide, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said Reid met with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Monday to inform the Republican leader that the fiscal year 2011 defense authorization bill will come to the Senate floor the week of Sept. 20. The aide said Senate leadership is anticipating the Senate won’t have unanimous consent to bring the legislation to the floor, so 60 votes will be necessary to end a filibuster and move forward with debate on the bill. 'We are going to take it the floor next week to see where the votes are,' the aide said."

Said Alexander Nicholson, founder and Executive Director of Servicemembers United: "We are both pleased and relieved that Senator Reid has decided to schedule the defense authorization bill for floor time next week. We are fairly confident that we will have the 60 votes to break a filibuster of this bill. It would be shameful for lawmakers to vote to hold up an important and expansive piece of legislation like the defense authorization bill simply because of their opposition to one or two provisions within it."

Politico adds: "Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich) downplayed the language in the existing authorization legislation, categorically rejecting that it amounts to a "repeal" of the 'Don't ask, don't tell' policy enacted in the Clinton administration. 'It does not repeal 'Don't ask, don't tell' — I wish that it did,' Levin said, before explaining that the language merely allows military authorities to overturn the policy if the internal reports they are conducting conclude that doing so would not be detrimental to troop morale. 'I think most people understand what this provision does.' Levin added that the bill was not perfect, but that the essential nature of funding troops in wartime necessitates passage."


Towleroad News #gay

—  John Wright

AFER responds to stay, gratified by ‘extremely expedited briefing schedule’

From the key players at the American Foundation for Equal Rights:

“We are very gratified that the Ninth Circuit has recognized the importance and pressing nature of this case and the need to resolve it as quickly as possible by issuing this extremely expedited briefing schedule. As Chief Judge Walker found, Proposition 8 harms gay and lesbian citizens each day it remains on the books. We look forward to moving to the next stage of this case,” said Attorney Theodore B. Olson.

“Today’s order from the Ninth Circuit for an expedited hearing schedule ensures that we will triumph over Prop. 8 as quickly as possible. This case is about fundamental constitutional rights and we at the American Foundation for Equal Rights, our Plaintiffs and our attorneys are ready to take this case all the way through the appeals court and to the United States Supreme Court,” said Chad Griffin, Board President, American Foundation for Equal Rights.

Given the expedited schedule, we could be at the Supreme Court sooner than we ever imagined.




AMERICAblog Gay

—  John Wright