White House Confirms Monday LGBT Stonewall 'Celebration'
Following reports that surfaced over the weekend, the White House has confirmed that Obama has invited high-profile LGBT "families, volunteers and activists, and community leaders" to a "celebration" on Monday in honor of the Stonewall anniversary:
"The White House has not publicized the reception, and officials did not respond to e-mail requests for comment. But gay leaders from here and around the country said they had received either telephone calls from the White House or written invitations to the event, and were told Mr. Obama is expected to speak. Some said it would take more than a reception to change their view that Mr. Obama has not been aggressive enough in pursuing gay rights. ... Whether Mr. Obama will address the complaints at Monday’s reception is unclear. One person who received the invitation said the White House was billing the event as a celebration, akin to the festive affairs the administration holds on St. Patrick’s Day or Cinco de Mayo. Another said the invitation included an offer to bring a guest. 'They want people to understand that their partners are welcome,' said this person, speaking anonymously because the White House has not announced the event."
Meanwhile, today the White House held a conference call at 2 pm EDT today to discuss the situation regarding Thursday's DNC fundraiser and the anger that has erupted around it, Americablog reports:
"We had a report that one of the caucus members asked the White House Deputy Chief of staff and political director: 'What are we going to do about the blogs?'"
Another person on the call reported it as "a waste of time."
And clearly they have more than the blogs to be concerned about.
The Servicemembers Legal Defense Network announced today that they would have protesters outside the fundraiser. Writes executive director Aubrey Sarvis:
"SLDN will be outside boycotting the Democratic National Committee (DNC) LGBT event in Washington this Thursday. SLDN will be calling upon the President to end his silence on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." We will be wearing and handing out buttons with the number 265, representing the number of service members who will have been discharged this week since President Obama was sworn in. We do not, nor would we want to, dictate how members of our board or our Military Advisory Council make their political views known. However, I understand that two board members are attending the DNC event. I also understand they will be making their own spirited and creative statements once inside the room."
And for the record, the National Black Justice Coalition has dropped out of the fundraiser as well.