Barney Frank: The White House Doesn’t Want ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Repealed This Year

Kerry Eleveld drops some disturbing revelations from Congressman Barney Frank into the middle of a broader article about the White House and legislative incompetence:


But just as the White House has pushed other legislation into the forefront only to back away and watch the congressional fireworks from afar, so it seems to be with ending the military’s gay ban.

As Rep. Barney Frank told me Friday, “I’m disappointed with the administration talking about delaying legislation for a year. But I’m working with Patrick Murphy [the lead sponsor of the House repeal bill] on it and I’m hoping we can push ahead.”

Like many pro-repeal advocates, Frank has consistently pinpointed the National Defense Authorization Act as “the only vehicle” for overturning the ban legislatively. When I noted that the White House has failed to designate the defense authorization bill over a stand-alone bill as its preferred method for repealing the policy, Frank responded, “That’s because they don’t want it done this year, not because they want it done separately.”

If Frank is correct, that would help clarify two things: (1) why administration officials declined to comment on the introduction of Sen. Joseph Lieberman’s new repeal bill — because they actually prefer the defense authorization act over a stand-alone bill; (2) why they haven’t advocated for a repeal measure to be included in this year’s authorization act — because they would prefer the issue recede into the shadows until next year.

The Human Rights Campaign has been repeatedly reassuring gay rights advocates that there is a "clear path" to repeal despite waffling, hesitation, and confusion on Capitol Hill. 

If the Democrats lose as many seats as it looks like they might in the upcoming elections, good luck with that!

(via americablog)


  1. ColinATL says

    This all the political calculation of Mr. Rahm Emanuel, who still thinks “the gays” are just a petulant bunch of cry babies that deserve to be milked for contributions and then ignored. And we let them do this to us. I still love this President, but he’s been a foot-dragger on gay issues. Grow a backbone, Obama.

  2. Alex M. says

    We must make Obama pay by helping defeat health reform. If you live in Mass, encourage Rep. Capuano to vote against Obama health plan (617) 621-6208

  3. ColinATL says

    Alex M, that’s a stupid, idiotic position to advocate. You are officially ridiculous. “I can’t get what I want, so I’m going to make sure that 30 million other people don’t get basic health insurance.” Get real.

  4. Alex M. says

    Colin: not my fault Georgia too primitive to fix its own health care mess. We’re doing fine in Massachusetts, everybody has health insurance up here. I am not intending to subsidize the homophobes down South or help them politically. Game over: Obama is a coward and a fraud.

    If you live in Mass., encourage Rep. Capuano to vote against Obama health plan (617) 621-6208

  5. BobN says

    How DARE the White House try to preserve a Democratic majority and achieve its stated goal of ending DADT within President Obama’s first term!!??!!?

    Oh, wait… those are both good things…

  6. djrobsd says

    The Democrats need to GROW SOME BALLS. WE HAVE the MAJORITY in the house, and the senate, and a Democratic president, let’s get this done WHILE WE CAN. Overturning DADT is NOT GOING TO MAKE ONE DIFFERENCE in the elections, the American people have already made up their mind – and almost all incumbents both democrat and republican are going to be thrown out on the street, so we might as well get this done while we have the opportunity!!!!

  7. says

    How naive are we? Dems are already in crisis with their push for health care reform. Politically, it isn’t feasible to take on another controversial issue before the November elections. There is no surprise here, unless you are misinformed.

  8. Dean says

    ColinATL, I totally agree with you. Anyone who would deny the rest of us health care is an asshole, plain and simple.

  9. Pender says

    I’ve called this since 2008: Obama’s going to waffle until 2012 when he can use it for reelection. Best of all would be if he “tried” and failed in 2012 so it could continue to be a nice, safe campaign issue on which the public agrees with his supposed position.

  10. cb says

    It’s very simple. If they(the White House and Obama)wanted to repeal DADT,it would have been repealed. End of story. I will never vote for another Democrat again. They are spineless and have no interest in helping with GLBT issues.

  11. Alex M. says

    Dean: maybe I’m an asshole, but I’m done being a doormat ATM for the Democrats. I voted for Scott Brown, and I will vote for openly gay Republican Richard Tisei for Lt. Gov of Massachusetts.

    There has to be a price to pay for political betrayal. Obama must pay the price.

  12. HW In SoCal says

    Gawd I hate that picture of Barney Frank. Not that I like Barney Frank The Politician much better, but maybe you could find another picture of this dude.

  13. Derek Washington says

    I am no fan whatsoever of Gay Inc. Let’s get that straight right off the bat.

    I just returned from DC where I met with Reid staffers. There is a path. It is going to happen. It will not be at some point in infinity and beyond. It is coming. If I didn’t truly believe it, I would be the loudest person here saying, “let’s burn this Mutha down!”.


    Be prepared, however, the minute that thing is killed, Gay Inc is going to claim it much like they claimed Marriage Equality in DC (pissing off every local activist I talked to who had been working on it for years). It is inevitable. Just step away from the “DONATE NOW” button when they do.

    When it does happen, look at the people who made it happen and then reach into your pockets and make sure they are re-elected because they’re are other battles ahead and we will need them.

    Oh. Yeah.

    To the Schleprock who suggested killing Health Care as payback, I can only assume you’re a Republican. No one else would be in favor of killing Americans in Death Squads by denying them care when they most need it.

  14. rafi says

    Alex, you voted for an anti-gay candidate over a pro-gay candidate, all in the name of gay rights? Please explain.

  15. Austin Rozzell says

    I for one dont think I should have to pay for your health care,
    i did not bring you into this world. You pay none of my bills why in the hell should I have to pay any of yours.

    Obama is a Coward, the Democratic party is full of cowards.

    Gay people that let the rest of the world walk over them ARE COWARDS, stand up and have the balls you where born with.
    FIGHT, be it with words or money or fists. but if U sit there and take it, you deserve what ever crap they give you.
    Bunch of limp wrist queers.
    Stand Up and BE THE MEN U ARE.
    Some time you guys make me ashamed to be know as a gay man. STAND THE FUCK UP. STAND AND BE KNOWN
    Or fall for every thing.
    My Name is Austin Rozzell and I approve of this message,
    if you dont like it, to dam bad.
    put on you big boy shorts and deal with it :)