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View Diary: DADT Deal Met for "conditional future repeal" (244 comments)

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  •  I'm not worried about this. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    philimus

    This is the path that the SLDN has argued for from the very beginning: they opposed the executive order path because of the Congressional law, argued that Congress needed to lift its side of the ban first, then put it back on the President's table.  I completely understand why people are skeptical about this version of the repeal, but I'm finding it hard to be.  The requirement for certification from the Pentagon isn't for the sake of the President or the Pentagon - it's the compromise that's getting people like Ben Nelson aboard, without which he was voting against it.  

    But the fact is, once Congress is out of the way, the President has the legal authority to abolish it by executive order, and that's been the long term strategy that the SLDN has advocated since last year.  Even the Palm Center is on board with this compromise.  Our two advocacy groups most intimately familiar with the law and the policy are green-lighting this - with due respect to Choi and all he's done for the cause, I'm more inclined to trust their reading of the proposed law and its consequences.  The only wild card here is the always-grumbly Gates.

    FWIW, when Truman desegregated the military, Congress did not pass a non-discrimination law protecting soldiers of color.  Yes, this leaves our gay, lesbian, and bisexual troops more vulnerable than they would be without that protection.  But let's lift the ban first.

    I completely understand why skepticism is the m.o. for our most passionate advocates - and skepticism is a good thing.  Stay skeptical, and continue to fight for repeal every step of the way.  I'm just pretty optimistic about this path, and I'll still be fighting with you.

    Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

    by pico on Tue May 25, 2010 at 12:18:51 PM PDT

    •  you should be worried. (7+ / 0-)

      This is having it both ways. Obama claimed that he didn't have the authority to end it by executive order. This law is now essentially giving him that same authority. And even in your best case scenario--what is to prevent a future president from using the executive authority now solely minted in the hands of the Executive from even reinstating DADT as it is today, or worse, ban gays completely once again. Where does this bill say it's not reversible by future executives? It is now done by de facto executive order, so whatever they decide to do or not do, it can be overturned.

      "People place their hand on the Bible and swear to uphold the Constitution. They don't put their hand on the Constitution and swear to uphold the Bible."

      by michael1104 on Tue May 25, 2010 at 12:50:06 PM PDT

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      •  I worry. This is essentially the deal made: (5+ / 0-)

         title=

        What could go wrong?

        We will remember in November.

        by Scott Wooledge on Tue May 25, 2010 at 01:21:56 PM PDT

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      •  Much like desegregation. (0+ / 0-)

        I don't quite understand what's going on with this site, sometimes.  Last year, when people were hounding the president for not ending DADT by executive order, the 'other side' was complaining that an executive order could easily be reversed.  Now the sides are switched.  This is nutty.

        Desegregation - the old saw to which the Obama administration has constantly been held up to and found wanting - was by executive order, did not come with legislative protections, and was not reversed.  That doesn't mean DADT will follow the same path, but I'm a little frustrated that these bits of historical evidence are used or discarded as is convenient.  Were these not concerns when people argued last year for the President to circumvent Congress and issue an executive order?  

        Again, I'm citing both SLDN and the Palm Center on this one, and the necessity of getting Congress out of the policy altogether.  Where that puts us in December is anyone's guess, but yes, I am optimistic because I believe I have reason to be - but your mileage may vary.

        Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

        by pico on Tue May 25, 2010 at 01:27:25 PM PDT

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        •  My argument for an excutive order... (3+ / 0-)

          ...was never that it was a permanent solution, it was that it would prevent the 500-some people from being kicked out of the military under DADT this past year from being kicked out while Congress produced a permanent solution.

        •  It is not nutty. (3+ / 0-)

          The criticism of the previous executive order proposal had merit if one bought the assumption that it would remove incentives for congress to take action and any protections afforded to service members would be entirely contingent on the goodwill of whoever was in the oval office. That becomes an equally valid criticism of this compromise proposal as long as discrimination protections are omitted from it.

          You can have your assumptions about what will happen next year and I can have mine. However, these is no reason to assume that either of us can predict the future. Being concerned about that future is not nutty.

        •  well my position was (3+ / 0-)

          I was never a fan of the EO plan, but recognized it existed, and would have saved the 500 careers that were destroyed in 2009.

          But, I recognized that it was an imperfect and (technically) reversible move (I say technically as it would have been hard to re-introduce DADT is many servicemembers began serving honestly).

          But, now, we've waited 15 months, and will like wait at least another 15 for the same result, a solution that is impermanent.

          We will remember in November.

          by Scott Wooledge on Tue May 25, 2010 at 01:39:22 PM PDT

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        •  Doing it by EO isn't perfect, but (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Clarknt67, Liberalindependent28

          What it would have done is allow thousands of GLBT service members do is come out of the closet. There is strength in numbers. If just 10% of the 66,000 GLBT people in the armed services came out, that would me kicking 6,600 people out if the EO is ever reversed. The sheer volume of out service members would make it politically impossible for Conservadems or Republicans to ever reverse it. But that coming out process needs time. It needed to be done early so that large numbers could come out and feel safe being out. Now we are faced with the situation that an EO probably doesn't have enough time to be an effective solution. Democrats have pissed away these two years and may have effectively killed the ability to pass GLBT equality legislation for at a minimum 2 years, but more probably 6-8 years.

          "So it was OK to waterboard a guy over 80 times but God forbid the guy who could understand what that prick was saying has a boyfriend."--Jon Stewart

          by craigkg on Tue May 25, 2010 at 03:24:14 PM PDT

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