How Come Nobody Is Thanking Ann Coulter For Getting GOProud To Ditch Gay Marriage Support?

We all know Ann Coulter has taken credit for convincing GOProud to lose an notion of a pro-marriage equality stance. "You're welcome America," she said on Hannity last night. But just like every other demographic she latches on to, Coulter is using gays as pawns in her war against liberals, who she continues to insist are obsessed with nothing but "destroy the family so that you have one loyalty, and that is to the state." See, "liberals don't care about blacks, they don't care about women, they don't care about gays." But hey, at least she didn't reserve the vitriol for the right: "Republican primary voters for some reason refuse to do any research before voting. They vote for the name of anyone they've ever heard before."


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—  David Taffet

Take Action: Please join us in thanking the troops who made today’s DADT victory possible

UPDATE @ 3:02 PM: Watch the Senate vote on final passage:

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UPDATE: The final Senate vote on DADT is expected at 3pm Eastern. We should easily win that. Then the bill goes straight to the White House for the President’s signature, from what I understand.

And here’s the vote count. We got all the Ds, exception Manchin, who chickened out and didn’t vote at all (history repeats itself and West Virginia takes a proud stand against the major civil rights bill of the day, again). And we got the following Rs: Snowe; Collins; Murkowski; Voinovich; Brown; Kirk.

There’s a lot of thanks to go around for today’s incredible and somewhat surprising, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” victory. Please join us in thanking the troops, from Leonard Maltovich to Dan Choi, who made today possible. You can add your name to our open letter of thanks to all of them, and we’ll deliver it to our friends at SLDN and Servicemembers United.

Now, it’s true that this isn’t over. The Senate still has two more votes on DADT before this bill passes the Senate (but those are simple majority votes, so we expect no problem). Then the bill goes to the President for his signature. But even then it’s not over. The President will need to work with the Pentagon to come up with the new regulations lifting the ban, and even then Republicans in Congress may try to stop implementation of the repeal. We’ll need to watch this like a hawk every step of the way, and we will, but today we celebrate.

Join us in thanking the troops, but really in thanking everyone who had a hand in this. Here a few who really led the way:

Everyone at Servicemembers Legal Defense Network and Servicemembers United. Especially their leaders, Aubrey Sarvis and Alex Nicholson, both proud vets. Then there are the vets. Leonard Matlovich, Perry Watkins, Tracy Thorne, Zoe Dunning, Justin Elzie, Michelle Beneke (and Dixon Osborn, who isn’t a vet, but set up SLDN 17 years ago with Michelle), Grethe Cammermeyer, Joe Steffan, Keith Meinhold, Eric Alva, Victor Fehrenbach, and Dan Choi… and so many more.

And let’s not forget the activists who weren’t willing to take no for an answer. Robin McGehee at GetEqual and the entire gay Netroots. Our friends in the White House who have been pushing this for two years, in the face of some serious internal challenges. Our friends on the Hill, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid – who both got this done. Senator Udall of Colorado. Senator Gillibrand. Senator Lieberman (yes, he actually busted his butt for us). Senators Snowe and Collins, and every other Republican and Democrat who finally came our way. And Congressman Patrick Murphy, who went the extra mile for us. And even the President, who finally got into gear (albeit a tad late) and made the calls necessary to make this happen.

I’m sure I’m forgetting far too many people, all the way back to my friends at the Campaign for Military Service back in 1993, and Michael in Senator Kennedy’s office who spent far too much time with me figuring out how to responds to the evil Sam Nunn.

So thank you all. It’s not over. But it’s a hell of a start, and a hell of a Christmas gift.

Please sign our thank you letter to the troops, and consider it a thank you to everyone, including all of you.

Not a bad day.

PS Okay, more folks coming to mind who helped out immensely. Kerry Eleveld at the Advocate who held Robert Gibbs’ feet to the fire, Richard Socarides who singlehandedly became one of our community’s top spokesmen on CNN and MSNBC. Trevor at SLDN and Brad Luna, the best PR folks you can find. And then there’s Paul Yandura and Jonathan Lewis, who went the extra mile, and then some, to make sure we all got equal. And the blogswarmers, from Pam Spaulding to Mike Signorile, Dan “It gets better” Savage, Andy Towle, Bill Browning, Joe Jervis, Adam Bink,and Jeremy Hooper.

It’s beginning to feel like the Oscars 🙂

Then there are the straight blogs, as we affectionately call them. Markos, a vet who earned his “honorary gay” medal years ago, Jane Hamsher who is about as dangerous a weapon on TV as any soldier in the field, and really everyone – Joe and I have remarked to ourselves numerous times how supportive the straight blogs have been to us and our issues over the years, so thank you, all of you. And not a blogger, but still a member of the Netroots, Jon Soltz at VoteVets, another vet who earned his honorary gay medal years ago, tirelessly fighting for us on TV far better than most of our groups.

And even OFA, while not yet quite earning their honorary gay medal, came through in the end and did some real work phone-banking and visiting Senate offices, so thank you.


—  admin

Thanking Our Allies in Colorado

The following is from HRC’s Colorado Steering Committee political co-chair, Aydrian Richardson:

On September 8th, three volunteers from the Human Rights Campaign had the privilege to personally meet Senator Mark Udall and discuss bills that are moving through Congress, and pieces of legislation that are anticipated to reach Congress this year or next. Attending alongside the senator was Alan Salazar, the senator’s senior political and policy adviser.

At the heart of discussions was the repeal of the discriminatory “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law that forces America’s service members to lie about who they are, and discharges able-bodied members of our Armed Forces. Senator Udall expressed his true sentiment in taking the lead of repeal when he stated that it was an easy thing to take the lead on because it is simply the right thing to do. As he put it, why discharge a man or woman who willingly gives themselves up to the possibility of dying for their country.

One area of concern which Senator Udall is currently struggling with is, “What are we going to say to the last person dishonorably discharged after we’ve announced plans to repeal DADT?” The groundwork has been laid for repeal, but that does not halt discharges from continuing, which greatly troubles the senator. The urgency is great, as expressed by Senator Udall, which is why it is at the top of his list for legislation to bring to the Senate floor for a vote now that has Congress returned from recess.

In addition to the repeal of DADT, we discussed passage of an inclusive Employment Non-Discrimination Act. Senator Udall promised to vote in favor of ENDA when it comes to the Senate for a vote. Sandy Hickerson, a transgender woman present, expressed the need for the bill to be inclusive, which the Senator understood and promised to push for.

In addition to these upcoming pieces of legislation that will be impacting the LGBT community, we also discussed the need for national anti-bullying laws to be passed and implemented immediately in our public school system. I took the time to bring up the bill that Colorado Representative Jared Polis is moving through the lower chamber of Congress; The Student Non-Discrimination Act. Ray Rodriguez shared the struggles of an elementary-aged child in Longmont that is transgender. He shared about the harassment that the little girl is dealing with from both classmates and teachers, and the lack of education and understanding surrounding these issues in schools. Senator Udall was deeply troubled from hearing about this situation and promised to work with Congressman Polis in advancing LGBT protections in public schools.

On behalf of the three HRC volunteers that attended the meeting, I would like to express appreciation to Senator Mark Udall and senior political and policy advisor Alan Salazar for providing us the forum to share our concerns and hopes for the LGBT community with them. I would also like to thank them for talking with us well beyond the time allotted, and for taking such interest in a cause which is not easy to stand up and be a leader on. We look forward to working with you both several more times for many more years.

Human Rights Campaign | HRC Back Story

—  John Wright