Lt. Dan Choi Subpoenas President Obama in Trial Over White House ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Arrests


Lt. Dan Choi and Captain Jim Pietrangelo have subpoenaed President Obama in their trial on minor civil disobedience charges surrounding their arrests for chaining themselves to the White House fence on March 18, reports Ben Smith at Politico:

The subpoena seeks to compel the testimony of President Barack Obama who has, on several occasions as President and Commander in Chief (and previously as a Senator and Presidential Candidate) called on the LGBT community to "pressure" him to change the DADT law and policy, thus allowing gay service members to serve their country openly and honorably.

The subpoena of the President is necessary for the defense to prove that Defendants were following and obeying lawful orders or directives by their President and Commander in Chief, and were therefore under an obligation and authority to act as they did in order to pressure him – in a non-violent, visible way – on this important public issue. In addition, these statements support the contention that Defendants were acting out of necessity, in order to prevent discrimination and greater harm to gay service members now serving.

For the full background on that day of civil disobedience, click here.

And the full memorandum from their defense counsel here.