Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Failure of Don't Ask Don't Tell repeal is 'disgustipating'

Posted By on Wed, Sep 22, 2010 at 1:58 PM

As Popeye used to say, “I’m disgustipated.” Yesterday, U.S. Senate Republicans flexed their, ahem, majority of 40 votes (+ 3 Dems) to block a military spending bill that would have repealed the armed forces’ ridiculous, harmful Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy. There’s a lot to be said about the successful GOP filibuster, but few have offered better commentary than veteran progressive journalist David Corn who, in a column titled “Is Lady Gaga a Better Politician Than Barack Obama?” makes a strong case that a lot of the blame for the DADT repeal failure falls on the administration’s half-assed efforts on its behalf.

In my mind, two other things also stand out in yesterday’s Senate vote. One, the fact that Republicans were actually willing to stop appropriations for the military altogether in order to guarantee that gays and lesbians keep getting crapped on by the government they’re fighting for. Two, those Republicans are confident that Democrats don’t have the competence or balls to make the argument I just made in the previous sentence — even though large percentages of Americans (including majorities of conservatives, for crying out loud) support repeal of DADT. The real problem is that, in the case of the Dems’ incompetence and spinelessness, the Republicans are essentially correct.

As a final wrap-up of yesterday’s vote, take a look at this video of Sen. Al Franken (sorry, but it still feels weird to write that) arguing for repeal, and choking up during a story about doing a USO show in Iraq, in which soldiers came up to him later to talk about being gay in the armed forces.

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