January 28, 2010
Let's hear the plan, Mr. President
Posted by: ChrisUPDATE: At the end of this post.
You knew Barack Obama's townhall meeting today in Tampa might not go well when he started off by giving a shoutout to that "model individual" Tony Dungy, the former Indianapolis Colts coach who made headlines in 2007 when he inserted himself into whether Indiana should pass a state constitutional amendment banning gays from marriage, even accepting an award from an anti-gay group for his efforts.
It went a bit downhill from there, when the president pretty thoroughly sidestepped a question for a college student about how he plans to follow through on his pledge in last night's State of the Union address:
As someone who has repeatedly defended the president against criticism that he, rather than Congress, is to blame for the lack of progress on DADT repeal and other gay rights advances, I thought the question was completely fair and Obama should have given more than a general answer that pretty much avoided the question entirely.
What is the plan, Mr. President? Do you support including Don't Ask Don't Tell repeal in the Defense Department appropriations bill, just as DADT was when President Clinton signed it into law in 1993? If not, what is the strategy for bypassing intransigent opposition by House Armed Services Chairman Ike Skelton (D-Mo.) and getting this thing done?
UPDATE: Some good news, albeit vague, reported by the AP:
The Pentagon said Thursday it will work to carry out the president’s wishes [concerning the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell]. Top military leaders are working on a plan for how repeal of the law would be implemented in the Defense Department, said Navy Capt. John Kirby, spokesman for Adm. Mike Mullen. chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
“The chairman and the (service) chiefs understand perfectly the president’s intent, and they look forward to being able to provide their best military advice about the implementation of repeal,” Kirby said of Obama’s statement.
Mullen and Defense Secretary Robert Gates were expected to address the topic in congressional budget hearings next week.
TrackBack URL for this entry:
The comments to this entry are closed.