Wednesday, July 29, 2009
This is getting more interesting each passing day. FL Rep. Alcee Hastings has withdrawn an amendment that would have blocked the military from using money to carry out “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” The viciously antigay Clinton-era policy prevents gays and lesbians from serving openly in the military.
Rep. Hasting, a Democrat, cryptically said he pulled the measure after he received pressure from the White House and colleagues. He did not say who in the White House — if it rolled up all the way to President Obama, or what colleagues were involved.
Hastings said in announcing his decision:
“I would, however, like to note that it is most unfortunate that we are not addressing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell at this time. We should not be appropriating funds to enable qualified service members to be booted out just because they are honest about whom they are.”
He took a slap at President Obama, noting that the military has spent over $95.1 million on retraining soldiers because of the law.
“What is the holdup, then?” Last month, 76 of my colleagues and I sent a letter to President Obama urging him to take leadership on this issue and to work together with Congress to repeal this law. More than a month later, I have yet to receive an official response.”
Really? No official response from the Obama White House? Excuse me but, didn’t Mr. Obama say throughout the campaign that he disagreed with the policy and vowed, if elected president, to repeal the ban?
MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow is also flummoxed:
After last November’s election, I said I would be happy if President Obama delivered on the repeal of both “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and DOMA, and had all of the combat troops out of Iraq by Aug. 2010. But alas, it appears he will accomplish none of this. 2012 can’t get here soon enough now.