Would Obama Dare Veto DADT Repeal Bill?

Thursday, September 16, 2010


When Sen. Barack Obama ran for president back in 2008, he promised to repeal the viciously homophobic, Clinton-era military policy “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” But nearly two years into his presidency, Mr. Obama’s commitment to repealing the ban seems to have gotten lost in his miserable poll numbers — now well below 50% approval.

While President Obama can’t unilaterally undo “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” – that job is up to Congress to pass a repeal bill for the president to sign, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid indicated this week he would bring the National Defense Authorization Act which includes a measure to repeal the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy to the Senate Floor next week.

But White House presser Robert Gibbs said Wednesday that he believed President Barack Obama intended to veto the National Defense Authorization Act if it includes funding for the controversial Joint Strike Fighter engine program after the U.S. House voted to include $500 million for the alternate engine in its version of the National Defense Authorization Act, regardless of whether or not a “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal measure is included in the bill.

Got that? In a challenging midterm election year and with dismal poll numbers, Mr. Obama may have found a way to weasel out of repealing the ban and he can justify it by claiming he’s still committed to seeing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” go away but he’s even more committed to trimming waste from the Pentagon’s budget.

It’s a lot like President Obama claiming he ended the Iraq war but left 50,000 troops behind and simply renamed the mission.

This entry was posted in Don't Ask Don't Tell, LGBT, Military, News, Politics, President Barack Obama and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to Would Obama Dare Veto DADT Repeal Bill?

  1. Joe in Colorado says:

    From where I sit, if the Democrats lose the House and it looks like this is inevitable, the gay community can wave adios to any hopes of repealing DADT for the next 2 to 4 years. I am looking forward to 2012 and a change of leadership at the top of the ticket.

  2. Walk on Socks says:

    If I didn’t know better, I would think Obama is getting advice from former President Bill Clinton.

    In 1993, under pressure from the far right, Clinton refused to stand up for the LGBT community and signed DADT, thus showing social conservatives in the Heartland and Bible Belt he wasn’t afraid of the queers.

    If Obama vetoes this defense bill, he can do the very samething and walk out into the sunlight and whore himself to his “friends across the aisle” as someone not afraid to stand up throw the queers under the bus.

    He really is despicable.

  3. Eric Equality Kuntz says:

    Almost makes you long for the ‘Line-Item Veto’ that was so controversial when Reagan was president?

    Clinton got to use it nearly 100 times before it was struck down in 1998.

    It looks like Joe Solmonese will have a lot of shit on his $400 shoes if Obama vetoes the bill.

  4. Brigadoon says:

    I’m reading this as I drink my first cup of coffee from under the bus before I get ready for work. The view from under the bus is becoming quite tiresome as Democrats just can’t deliver for our community. I saw on another blog that ENDA is DOA for 2010. Speaker Pelosi promised to make passage of ENDA a top priority but ENDA is just too controversial and requires so much effort. So now it looks like Obama will wimp out of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell? Well, I say good. As far as I’m concerned, all the incumbent Democrats need to be voted out of office along with all the incumbent Republicans. Let the revolution begin and maybe these Beltway fat cats will learn an important lesson about taking their constituency for granted.

  5. VicoDANIEL says:

    Speaking of Joe Solmonese, and I try to speak of him as little as I can, didn’t he promise DADT would be repealed this year?

    In fact, I’m certain he said precisely this in one of the HRC solicitations I’ve received in my email box asking for donations.

    It looks like my ATM will remain off-limits to all the Democrats trying to hold onto their seats and this includes the president.

    vicodaniel1987@yahoo.com

  6. Peace Nick says:

    Christopher – Thanks for staying on top of this issue and not wasting your time and energy on the Tea Party, Sarah Palin, Rand Paul, or posting pictures of kittens and orchids.

    Regarding ENDA, Pelosi was quite clear when she spoke to Gay, Inc. last May and said ENDA would be law this year. Pelosi told Equality California this on the record. In fact, the totally useless Barney Frank said the timeline was ENDA first, followed by the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Pelosi, Frank and even President Obama must be held accountable and if they fail, they should feel the wrath of the voters.

  7. R.J. says:

    Every day I wake up it looks more likely I’m going to vote on the state ballot initiatives and for Jerry Brown while leaving the rest of the ballot blank.

  8. Rachel says:

    How can the nut jobs in the Pentagon expand the US military presence into Yemen, Iran and beyond if they keep throwing perfectly qualified men and women out of the service when their only crime is being gay or lesbian?

  9. Mauigirl says:

    Just finally catching up here, and am horrified at that possibility that Obama would veto the bill. It would be shameful if he vetoed it for political purposes. Hasn’t he learned yet that nothing he does will placate the Republicans enough to support anything, so why is he wasting time trying to appear fiscally responsible? He should stand up for what he said he’d do, and if a $500 million expenditure is attached to it, too bad. It’s not as if he put it in there. And he has nothing to lose anyway – his popularity is already low.

  10. The American military can’t afford gay fighter jets!

  11. Estacada says:

    I was a huge fan of Obama in 2008.

    He promised he would usher in change but instead, we got pro-Wall Street, pro-Federal Reserve centrist who refuses to throw out the Bush Doctrine in the Afghanistan.

    I can’t wait to see the expression on his face when he comes before the Washington Press Corp the week after the Democrats lose their majority in the House and senate. People will begin to mistake Obama as one of the White House porters.

  12. Stephan Iversonn says:

    Mr. Obama is about to enter that rarefied realm of what is termed euphemistically as “Worst President Ever.” In fact, there’s an empty seat with his name on it next to former President Bush.

    I took a lot of guff from O bots when I said spending all of 2009 on healthcare was a huge mistake. They said, “if he doesn’t act now, it will never get done.” My position was simple: fix the economy and create jobs first. Once the economy and jobs improved, he would have so much political capital to spend on healthcare that single-payer would be a slam-dunk.

    Now comes US Census numbers showing why the economy and jobs should’ve been the president’s top priority and not healthcare. The overall poverty rate climbed to 14.3 percent, or 43.6 million people, the Census Bureau said Thursday in its annual report on the economic well-being of U.S. households.

    One-in-seven Americans now live in poverty.

    The report covers 2009, President Barack Obama’s first year in office.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100916/ap_on_bi_ge/us_census_poverty

  13. Harry says:

    Is it possible to take the Obama/Biden campaign to small claims court to get a refund for the $100 I was dumb enough to given in 2008?

  14. Matteo says:

    Speaking of cowardly Dumbos, have you guys seen the new and improved Democratic Party website? They have completely scrubbed any mention of repealing DOMA as one of their civil rights goals!

    http://www.democrats.org/issues/civil_rights

    I’m with Estacada. I can’t wait to see this nitwit of a president try to govern with a Republican majority in the Congress. I’ll laugh every day for 24 months!

  15. I can’t believe I’m going to say this but, after Obama’s first 20 months in office, I’m left to conclude Hillary Clinton would’ve been better on LGBT issues.

    Love her or hate her but, Hillary was tried and tested and, she fought the GOP and their whack-a-doodle minions going all the way back to her days in Arkansas. They couldn’t make her blink.

    Unlike Obama, who runs and hides the moment his Republican critics say “boo!” He’s quite the timid fellow.

  16. Vivzzz says:

    Yes, Hillary is a tough old bird who came to gay rights later in life with the help of personal evolution and a shove from her liberal, pro-gay daughter. Obama, by contrast is evolving in reverse. He was definitely more gay-friendly back in his Chicago days. Now, he’s under the influence of the Baby Jesus and Rahm Emanuel. I have lost all hope for him. We need to focus on 2012.

  17. DMason says:

    I don’t think President Obama’s heart is in it now. I look in his eyes and watch his body language and he isn’t the same person we watched get sworn in back in January, 2009. I think whatever lofty ideas he once thought he could bring to America, died with the ugly healthcare debate. Just my opinion.

  18. Adirondacky says:

    Repealing this terrible, discriminatory ban is such a no-brainer and would make the Democrats and the president look like leaders — something they aren’t perceived as being by huge percentages of the voters, yet they’re so afraid of that one critic. Leadership can’t happen when you operate out of fear. Obama should read Churchill every day before going downstairs.

  19. Jolly Roger says:

    The President is a good deal further to the right than I think a lot of people realized. 30 years ago, he’d have been a very effective Rushpubliscum candidate.

  20. Mets Fan says:

    Obama is fine at appointing openly gay Americans to no-political risk cabinet positions or even ordering gay Federal employees be treated the identical to their straight counterparts.

    But the moment the military is involved, Obama gets weak-in-the-spine and becomes deferential. When I read Gen. Stan McChrystal’s remarks of how Obama was “afraid” of the military, I didn’t get it but I get it now. Obama isn’t a military man. He’s an Ivy League man and not prepared to go toe-to-toe with men in uniform.

  21. Scott Dancer says:

    Sen. Joe Lieberman said Thursday the Defense Authorization Act will probably be filibustered to death by the GOP because it houses the repeal the ban language and there aren’t 60 votes to break a filibuster

    Plus, since President Obama has no political capital to spend and lacks the necessary legislative skills to go directly to the Republican leadership and work out a compromise deal, the measure will very likely not pass this year.

    This is when you remember with a certain fondness the abilities of Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan to engage the party-opposite to get the work of the American people accomplished.

  22. LM says:

    I think a lot of people took a simplistic view on the Clinton’s approach to gay rights – it’s easy to forget the climate of the time and what far greater anti-gay evil they were trying to prevent happening. Even today, the more progressive folks have to lie – its not like any of these candidates can come forward and say “I’m an atheist” today…not if they want to be elected. Politicians lie – it’s a matter of picking the right liar who will do the right things.

    The trick is reading between the lines when a candidate (by necessity) lies. With the Obama crowd so many middle of the road types came on board that, and people just looked away when the party filled up with those who didn’t support gay and lesbian or women’s issues, and people made the mistake of “believe”-ing. The writing was always on the wall, for those who were still clear headed enough to read it.

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