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MSNBC's Chuck Todd Presses Robert Gibbs on LGBT Policy

Cheucktodd_robertgibbs

Chuck Todd follows up on today's White House Pride event, Obama's promises and follow-through on LGBT policy — more specifically, "Don't Ask, Don't Tell". Gibbs insists that the White House wants Congress to work it out rather than an order coming from "on high."

Gibbs says immediately halting gay discharges would "exacerbate the problem of getting something through Congress."

Watch it, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Comments

  1. The foot dragging of Obama and the democrats on DADT have nothing to do with fear of offending moderates and Republicans. It has everything to do with shielding current Democratic members of Congress who do not support overturning DADT. If a vote was taken on DADT, then the gay community would know who does and not support us. Think Senator Michael Bennet of Colorado. The DNC knows this. Preserving the democratic majority in Congress is more important to them than appeasing us with a vote.

    Posted by: loki7329 | Jun 29, 2009 9:09:35 PM


  2. The president wants plausible deniability on DADT. Thereby he skirts the issue. Classic political maneuvering! Smoke and mirrors...

    Posted by: RB | Jun 29, 2009 9:16:04 PM


  3. It is simple. This White House does not want to get its hands making sure that Don't Ask Don't Tell or Defense Of Marriage Act die a quick death. Instead, they want to pass the buck to Congress so that any backlash will not reflect on them.

    Posted by: peterparker | Jun 29, 2009 9:18:21 PM


  4. Why doesn't he just have the bill submitted to Congress then? What's the reason for waiting on the submittion of legislation. Gay people should remain steadfast. Do not donate to the DNC, HRC, or any group that doesn't not voice their objection loudly. Action by legislation, not words. No action, no dollars.

    Posted by: David | Jun 29, 2009 9:39:02 PM


  5. The White House strategy makes perfect sense. If the President moves on DADT through Executive Order this unilateral action will complicate getting the repeal through Congress, which is ultimately necessary.

    I still have full confidence in Barack Obama. What angers me about this issue is that when Obama does act, the angry negative commenters on this site are going to claim credit - that their outcry made the difference - when in reality they have marginalized themselves to the point of meaninglessness with their histrionic rants and attacks on our friends.

    Posted by: JimSur212 | Jun 29, 2009 9:52:54 PM


  6. And one other point... many of the commenters on this site have not only attacked our friends, but our most dedicated leaders like Barney Frank. There was a recent article in the New York Times that asked why no Martin Luther King arrived on the scene to champion gay rights. One reason that they did not give is all too evident on this site. Too many elements in our community would not allow a leader to emerge. We are too eager to eat our own. The comments here about Frank, HRC and now Polis are an absolute disgrace and a stain on the character of the gay community as a whole.

    Posted by: JimSur212 | Jun 29, 2009 10:00:18 PM


  7. If the Dems lose control of the House or Senate at the next mid-term elections, things will really suck for us on DOMA, won't they?

    Posted by: Terry | Jun 29, 2009 10:15:49 PM


  8. this white house doen't want to do anything on this issue. Congress doesn't. Keep the pressure on!

    Posted by: clint | Jun 29, 2009 10:22:35 PM


  9. I sometimes become frustrated with the comments following posts about DADT and DOMA. These things can't happen overnight. There is always tons of stuff going on in the world and the USA. Please give the administration time to deal with as many issues as possible. If this isn't done at the end of the four year term then we can start getting angry. Until then just keep on the pressure - but don't sound like whiney Americans.

    Posted by: Kevin Hunt | Jun 29, 2009 10:36:14 PM


  10. Actually, I agree that time may be running out on a large majority in Congress, in which case this year might be our best chance.

    Posted by: anon | Jun 29, 2009 11:04:03 PM


  11. I hope histoty bears out that I am being impatient and there is some larger plan, but it sure sounds like the Obama administration is not walking its talk. I hope they keep being grilled on this on many fronts. They think it might complicate things legislatively if the president issues a stop-loss order? Imagine a president actually taking a principled stand, AND taking the lead in demanding a legislative solution! That's what they don't get--the people who would ridicule the president for this are ridiculing him anyway!

    Posted by: chris barnett | Jun 29, 2009 11:17:43 PM


  12. "These things can't happen overnight."

    I'm not sure I understand why this is supposedly true. Yes, the President could stop dismissing gay military members "overnight." Beyond that, what are the issues that need to be hammered out? If it starts in Congress, how is it any more complicated than a sentence or two repealing DADT (or DOMA)? It's not that complicated. "The policy of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' is hereby annulled. Homosexuality is no longer in itself prohibited in the US Military." Ta-da!

    Sure, they might want to re-write the terms of "sexual misconduct" to fix pronouns and such, but what would be so difficult that it "can't happen overnight?"

    DOMA should be even easier. Just repeal the thing. Now, I'm not naive, and I know that lawmakers get wordy. I also know there are a lot of non-gay issues to deal with at present. But these two issues shouldn't take 1,000 pages, or endless committees to enact. And they DO, we're going to get another stupid "comprimise" or worse.

    Posted by: Jamie in Las Vegas | Jun 29, 2009 11:27:42 PM


  13. "The comments here about Frank, HRC and now Polis are an absolute disgrace and a stain on the character of the gay community as a whole."

    Joe Solomese is that you?

    What was truly a DISGRACE was that Obama and his Stepford Queers sipped cocktails and ate canapes today while Lt. Dan Choi will be discharged from the Military tomorrow.

    THATS the true DISGRACE

    Posted by: Wolfie | Jun 29, 2009 11:33:13 PM


  14. Whenever you see Obama apologists start telling people to sit back and just give it more time, remember that forty years after Stonewall we have exactly the same federal protections - ZERO.

    This President obviously believes that LGBT rights are a hot-button issue for so-called Values Voters and he doesn't want to piss them off. You just said as much. Why should that be OK for one moment?!?

    Please explain to me why some ignorant homophobic "Christians" should have control over my citizenship. The longer the White House gives credence to the idea that gay rights should even be up for debate, the more these right-wing nuts think their hatred is justified.

    I will not let this opportunity slip away into next year, next Congress or next term! So yeah, I'm doing everything I can. I'm riling people up with blog posts. I'm calling my elected officials. I'm bitching on this site every time Obama tells us we just have to wait. And in October I'll be marching on Washington along with everyone I can drag with me.

    Rather than insult me for being impatient, maybe you should try a little impatience yourself.

    Posted by: MattP | Jun 29, 2009 11:33:35 PM


  15. can obama sign an executive order to halt the discharges? i keep hearing that, but nobody seems to be pressing him on THAT issue.

    i dont know who is right anymore about what can be done. there seems to be all sorts of viewpoints out there. i hear this, i hear that. he can do this, no he can't...WHICH IS IT?

    Posted by: Johnny | Jun 29, 2009 11:35:08 PM


  16. The President ABSOLUTELY DOES have authority to freeze discharges. NOTE even his official apologists like Gibbs aren’t claiming he doesn’t...they just auto switch the subject to “permanent change” of repeal.

    And it’s not a “magic wand"...it’s a LAW and NO ONE with any serious knowledge is claiming it would repeal or suspend DADT but only suspend discharges under “stop-loss” which goes back in practice to World War II. In 1983, Congress formalized it intoy 10 United States Code 12305, empowering the President to "suspend ANY provision of law relating to promotion, retirement, or separation applicable to ANY member of the armed forces who the President determines is essential to the national security of the United States."

    Not only would groups like Focus on the Family have NO “legal standing” to challenge a freeze in court, neither would any member of Congress for he/she would be challenged their own DADT-overriding law.

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid...hardly a Molotov cocktail thrower at legality and procedure....has called upon the President to do it until actual repeal can be legislated.

    With 59% of even REPUBLICAN voters supporting repeal, there's no reason to believe that any attempt to exploit a freeze would get off the ground.

    The only “magic” to debate is who...sometime between November 4th and January 20th... made Obama’s balls disappear.

    Posted by: Michael @ LeonardMatlovich.com | Jun 29, 2009 11:53:30 PM


  17. You know its transparent what he's doing.

    He used us to get elected. He's throw us some MINOR crumbs the first four years but nothing major so he doesn;t offend others. Face it he probably only plans to do anything substantial IF he gets re-elected in his 5th Year when he becomes a lame duck.

    The bad thing is with that strategy is IF he doesn't get re-elected we get screwed.

    THATS why we don't get a "timeline" and he keeps saying "by the end of his ADMINISTRATION" which can be 8 years.

    Personally I am beginning to think its time to chuck the US and move to Canada or England.

    Posted by: Wolfie | Jun 30, 2009 12:01:22 AM


  18. "..dedicated leaders like Barney Frank.." !? Frank is out for no one but Frank. He is neither my leader nor my ally.

    Posted by: Let'sFaceIt | Jun 30, 2009 12:11:24 AM


  19. The GLBT community got the man elected...lets back off and see what happens. He should really think about trying to get these laws overturned before the mid term elections in 2010. If he thinks he needs our help come the 2012 election than he would be wise to start passing some serious shit...than the laws of DOMA and DADT need to be overturned in our favor before time runs out.
    He's a smart man...well lets see how smart he is...and that WEINNER Barney Frank needs to be more butch and start fighting harder for the GLBT issues...he's been in office how long?

    Posted by: xman | Jun 30, 2009 12:29:43 AM


  20. My beef is with politians as a whole, anyone who claims they're for the security of this country. It's a shameful lie. As someone said a few weeks ago (in regards to the torture debate) what use is it to get information out of the terrorists if there are no Arabic linguists there to translate what he's saying? Both parties are reprehensible to me for their comfort with the status quo, and then they have the balls to go out seeking election saying they're pro-security, keeping the country safe, etc. That's just bullshit. Speak truth to power: that's bullshit.

    So many of our allies have gays in their military openly, that too shows that it's bullshit that our own forces cannot weather the burden!

    I see no reason to listen to people commenting "but wait a little." Honey, neither Norfolk, Washington DC, Langley, Quantico, etc. are too far from where I currently am and where my loved ones reside. We know the 9/11 group was scoping out Norfolk (and made business at local SunTrust banks). Having DA/DT makes anyone living in or near a prospective targeted area more vulnerable than they need to be.

    That's why Frank Rich's column on Sunday ended with this germane point: more than just gay Americans should be upset with the way gay Americans are treated.

    so stop telling me "it's a slow process." It's like waiting for the Vatican to apologize for it's excommunication of Galileo. Is that swift enough action for you apologists?! There's urgency with DA/DT for our safety, and all the politicians seem to be in denial, denial, denial.

    Posted by: Daniel | Jun 30, 2009 3:06:23 AM


  21. We wouldn't have gotten even what little we've gotten if we hadn't kicked up a fuss. We can't let up now.

    No justice, no peace.

    Silence = death.

    Posted by: Conshieguy | Jun 30, 2009 7:08:51 AM


  22. What astounds me is that no one in the Administration has addressed the sickening brief filed in with the California court comparing the GLBT community with pedophiles and people who commit incest.

    They haven't renounced those words and, therefore, they stand by them.

    It is what started this furor and it is disgusting.

    Posted by: Charlie | Jun 30, 2009 8:00:01 AM


  23. i agree with charlie and his points.

    the way i see it; people arent challenging OBAMA. stop asking Gibbs the questions and start asking obama. gibbs always sounds like an idiot

    Posted by: Johnny | Jun 30, 2009 8:17:06 AM


  24. @ WOLFIE
    "What was truly a DISGRACE was that Obama and his Stepford Queers sipped cocktails and ate canapes today while Lt. Dan Choi will be discharged from the Military tomorrow. THATS the true DISGRACE"

    YOU ROCK!!!!

    Posted by: MikeMick | Jun 30, 2009 8:42:04 AM


  25. Fuck you, Jimsur212 if you don't like it! Since when are Barney Frank and any other LGBT politician above reproach just because their one of us? We should absolutely hold them accountable and criticize them when they don't do what we want them to do. They are OUR representatives not the other way around. Maybe YOU should get pissed off by the intransigence or OUR so called own. "Dont tell me not to live,
    Just sit and putter,
    Lifes candy and the suns
    A ball of butter.
    Dont bring around a cloud
    To rain on my parade."

    Posted by: tooboot | Jun 30, 2009 8:59:47 AM


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