DOJ will appeal fed. court’s striking down of DADT

Via The Advocate:

The Department of Justice asked a federal judge Thursday to continue enforcing the military’s ban on gay and lesbian service members, despite a ruling earlier this month that struck down “don’t ask, don’t tell” as unconstitutional.

In a 14-page filing, Justice Department attorneys argued that an immediate, permanent injunction against enforcing the law —one supported by Log Cabin Republicans, which successfully challenged DADT in court and has argued for a halt to all discharges of gay service members — would be “untenable.” (A PDF of the government’s brief is here.)

“Because any injunction in this case must be limited to [Log Cabin Republicans] and the claims it asserts on behalf of its members – and cannot extend to non-parties – plaintiff’s requested world-wide injunction of [DADT] fails as a threshold matter,” assistant U.S. attorney Paul Freeborne wrote.

DADT repeal advocates and attorneys representing Log Cabin Republicans immediately slammed the Justice Department’s filing. Dan Woods, lead attorney for the national gay Republican group, called the arguments “ridiculous” and said his team would file a response as soon as Friday.

“It’s our view that the objections fail to recognize the implications of the government’s defeat at this trial,” Woods told The Advocate. “This case was never limited to only Log Cabin members. And the request for a stay ignores the harm that would be suffered by current and potential service members during a period of the stay.”

In a late Thursday statement, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said the filing “in no way diminishes the President’s firm commitment to achieve a legislative repeal of DADT — indeed, it clearly shows why Congress must act to end this misguided policy.”   

But Servicemembers United executive director Alex Nicholson, the only named plaintiff in the lawsuit, said the Obama administration “had a choice to take several different routes [with the injunction], from the moderate and reasonable to the extremely ridiculous. It appears that they decided to go with the latter end of the spectrum.”

Nicholson said the DOJ’s filing further erodes faith in the administration for many gays and lesbians seeking substantive change. “Lately a lot of us were holding out hope that there would be a semi-reasonable response to this judicial victory. It appears that [Obama] might be disappointing us yet again,” he said.

Thank gosh the Obama administration is a fierce advocate for LGBT rights. Otherwise, it would look like he’s not doing a damn thing for them. Via Dan Savage:

Where was the President when the Senate was debating DADT on Tuesday? AWOL. He made no public statements, he couldn’t be bothered to pick up the phone and call a single wavering Senator to ask for their vote. But he did have time to make at least one call on Tuesday: “Earlier today, President Obama called members of the Seattle Storm organization, to congratulate them on winning the WNBA Finals for the second time …”


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