Judge Virginia Phillips will let stand her federal injunction to immediately stop the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. Despite the Obama administration’s request to continue enforcing the discriminatory policy, Phillips remains unmoved.
Good news for DADT activists (though not all gay rights advocates), a fine mess for the President (see how Rachel Maddow attempts to clarify the situation). Obama has slowly been losing traction with his LGBT base; little has been done to repeal DOMA or DADT on the White House front, though an executive order from the President would have rolled back one or both policies.
How did the Obama administration find itself defending a policy that it doesn’t support? According to Politico:
“It’s crazy that all this is happening 2½ weeks before a national election,” said Richard Socarides, an adviser to Clinton on gay issues during the ’93 fiasco. “The timing could not be worse for them, but it was fairly predictable that their strategy of postponing and delaying getting into this stuff was, at some point, going to come back to haunt them.”
Obama’s current predicament is a result of a collision between a go-slow White House strategy that deferred to Pentagon and military leaders on the pace of repealing “don’t ask, don’t tell” and the progress of a stuttering federal lawsuit that a small group of gay Republicans filed more than six years ago.
Among the Department of Justice’s evidence explaining the necessity for more time, DOJ presented an article from Rolling Stone, saying an injunction against DADT would hurt military readiness.
The judge balked.