Hey, Congress: don't ask, do!
Now, where was I? Right. Congressional lameness.
This came to mind when I read Politico's story about how folks on Capitol hill "are growing increasingly worried over the lack of a detailed White House road map for passing a repeal" of "don't ask don't tell." A detailed plan from the White House? Man up, people! Last I checked -- and School House Rock backs me up on this -- Congress is a co-equal branch of government.
But the men and women of Capitol Hill can't seem to adjust to having a president who treats them as such. Under President Bush, Congress was treated like staff. The executive had the plans and the legislative branch basically did what it was told. Checks and balances were seemingly for sissies then. Not today. President Obama, constitutional law professor he, actually wants them to do their jobs. And they can't handle it.
According to Politico, House Dems are afraid that without hand-holding from the White House, whatever they accomplish on repealing the ban on gays serving openly in the military will disappear in that legislative black hole otherwise known as the Senate.
Those suffering from PTSD from the battle 17 years ago that led to "don't ask don't tell" need to get over it. Three polls out this week show strong public backing. The Post/ABC News poll
puts support for allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military at 75 percent. A quirky New York Times poll shows that 59 percent support "permitting homosexuals" to serve openly while 70 percent are in favor of "permitting gay men and lesbians" to do so. And a Quinnipiac University National Poll puts support for repeal at 57 percent, with 66 percent calling current policy "discriminatory."
Meanwhile, Rep. Patrick J. Murphy (D-Penn.) has 187 co-sponsors and at least 24 commitments to vote yes on his bill to overturn "don't ask don't tell." That's 211 votes, seven short of passage. And the Pentagon laid out its plan last week for how it is preparing for when the law is repealed. Not if -- when. So, Democrats, stop fretting and get about the business of doing.
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