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Delays in “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal certification and what lies ahead

Don't Ask Don't Tell

By Adam Bink

Here’s White House Press Secretary Jay Carney:

John Aravosis makes three good points in expressing concern about the Administration’s lack of concern regarding certification of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal. Sen. Gates is set to depart and while we know training is underway, there is still no definite timeline. The first is that the longer this takes, the longer anti-repeal Republicans in Congress have to take potshots at it and figure out a way to harm repeal, as they did last month by enacting unnecessary measures to harm certification in the defense authorization bill. The latter two points:

The Republicans would like nothing better than to tick the gays off against Obama, and undermining DADT repeal is a great way to do it, and they know it. The administration’s certitude notwithstanding, I’d like to avoid a situation where the President is forced to veto, oh, say, the debt ceiling increase in order to save DADT repeal.  Never underestimate the Republicans’ ability to muck things up.

And its a timing issue. Alex Nicholson of Servicemembers United:

“Given that at least three service branches are scheduled to be 100 percent done with repeal training by the time Secretary Gates leaves, it is simply not reasonable to leave this task unfinished and to pass the buck on to the new guy,” Nicholson said. “We have been patient in waiting until summer for certification, but any further delay beyond June is just unreasonable and will surely result in serious and widespread disappointment.”

It’s been 167 days since the President signed repeal and it’s now June of the following year. It’s not a matter of patience, but concern that the longer this drags, the more trouble we may find on the path.


  • 1. David Henderson  |  June 7, 2011 at 4:29 am

    Which is why it's still critical that the LCR's lawsuit continues: It keeps the pressure on Obama and the Pentagon. Obama certainly doesn't want to be upstaged by Republicans doing what he won't.

  • 2. Ann S.  |  June 7, 2011 at 6:31 am


    WHEN: Monday, June 13, 2011, 7:30 – 8:30 am

    WHERE: Philip Burton Federal Building

    450 Golden Gate Ave., San Francisco, CA

    Media Contacts: Billy Bradford, (415) 716-6315,

    John Lewis, (415) 377 7924,;

    Stuart Gaffney, (415) 378 3259

    San Francisco: On Monday, June 13, 2011, from 7:30-8:30 am, Marriage Equality USA will host a “Motion to Marry” rally at the United States District Court immediately preceding Judge James Ware’s hearing on the Proposition 8 proponents’ motion to vacate Judge Walker’s ruling holding Proposition 8 unconstitutional.

  • 3. Sagesse  |  June 7, 2011 at 12:02 pm

    Gates urged to certify ‘Don’t Ask’ repeal before retirement

  • 4. BK  |  June 7, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    GRRR! >:(

  • 5. AB  |  June 7, 2011 at 2:50 pm

    Again, this is off topic but it is sort of a big deal right now:

    So, how about that New York marriage equality push? That's getting to be a real nail-biter, eh?

  • 6. Sheryl, Mormon Mothe  |  June 7, 2011 at 4:37 pm

    Ann, thanks for posting this information. Hope you will be able to be there.

  • 7. David Henderson  |  June 7, 2011 at 4:42 pm

    Wyoming Supreme Court, in the case of Christiansen v. Christiansen, unanimously recognizes right of couple married in Canada to get a divorce in state court.

    Quotes, some of which seem positive, some of which seem negative:

    Nothing in this opinion should be taken as applying to the recognition of same-sex marriages legally solemnized in a foreign jurisdiction in any context other than divorce. The question of recognition of such same-sex marriages for any other reason, being not properly before us, is left for another day. (fn. 1)

    In doing so [saying that since marriage is defined as being between a man and a woman, the court did not have the right to grant a divorce], the district court did not give proper respect to Wyo. Stat. Ann. § 20-1-111 (LexisNexis 2009), which provides that “[a]ll marriage contracts which are valid by the laws of the country in which contracted are valid in this state.” [¶7]

    It is not enough that a marriage would not be valid if solemnized in Wyoming. Common law marriages provide a good example. Common law marriages entered into in this state are invalid. […] Yet, this Court has recognized the validity of common law marriages entered into in foreign jurisdictions for limited purposes. [¶11]

    Respecting the law of Canada, as allowed by § 20-1-111, for the limited purpose of accepting the existence of a condition precedent to granting a divorce, is not tantamount to state recognition of an ongoing same-sex marriage. Thus, the policy of this state against the creation of same-sex marriages is not violated. [¶13]

    Decision (just 5 pages long):


  • 8. Sagesse  |  June 7, 2011 at 10:02 pm

    Judicial neutrality on trial, with a Supreme backdrop

  • 9. Sagesse  |  June 7, 2011 at 10:05 pm

    Will Moses Put in an Appearance at This Monday’s Prop 8 Rally?

  • 10. Sagesse  |  June 7, 2011 at 10:25 pm

    Gay reps ask Obama to extend veto threat to DADT

  • 11. Ann S.  |  June 8, 2011 at 2:08 am

    Thanks, Sheryl, I hope I will, too. I should know Friday.

  • 12. Ann S.  |  June 8, 2011 at 2:09 am

    @David H., it may seem counter-intuitive, but granting divorces is actually a positive legal step in my view. I'm not surprised by how they tried to hedge their decision and say it doesn't mean that they would recognize the marriage. It's hard to have one without the other, though.

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