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|DOJ Files Objection to delay “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal
(Washington, DC)- Log Cabin Republicans are angered by the United States Department of Justice decision to file an objection to the United States District Court Judge Virginia Phillips’s ruling to delay the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”
“We are deeply disappointed with this Administration’s decision” says Log Cabin Republicans Executive Director R. Clarke Cooper. “Yet again, the Obama Administration has failed to live up to its campaign promise to repeal this unconstitutional law for the servicemembers of this country.”
The “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” statute was passed in 1993 by a Democratic-controlled Congress and signed into law by President Bill Clinton. The Pentagon has conducted several studies at the direction of numerous Secretaries of Defense and has not found justification for barring service by gay and lesbian Americans. On February 2nd 2010, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael Mullen, both Republican appointees, testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee in support of repeal. A repeal-inclusive National Defense Authorization Act of 2011 was passed in a bipartisan vote in the Senate Armed Services Committee on May 27th and by a bipartisan vote in the House of Representatives on May 28th. The Senate has delayed their vote on this legislation.
“The Justice Department’s objections fail to recognize the implications of the government’s defeat at the trial. It is as if the South announced that it won the Civil War,” said Dan Woods, White & Case attorney who is representing the Log Cabin Republicans. “The objections also fail to mention that the court has previously denied the government’s requests for a stay on three prior occasions and nothing has changed to suggest that a stay is now appropriate; if anything, the Senate vote this week shows that the court was correct in denying the prior requests for a stay. But what is most troubling is that the government’s request for a stay ignores the harm that Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell causes to current and potential members of our Armed Forces. That is the saddest, most disappointing, and, in light of the President’s position, most hypocritical part of the objections.”
Log Cabin Republicans is the only Republican organization dedicated to representing the interests of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans and their allies. The more than 30-year old organization has state and local chapters nationwide, a full-time office in Washington, DC, a federal political action committee and state political action committees.