As you may have heard by now, a US Appeals Court has decided that the military is within its rights to continue enforcing DADT. According to a three judge panel from the Ninth Circuit, the law warrants sufficient deference to postpone dramatic changes in its enforcement for three reasons:
1. Acts of Congress are presumptively constitutional.
2. The judiciary must be particularly deferential to Congress when Congress is doing military things.
3. Judge Phillips is just one federal judge, and her ruling conflicts with others who have ruled before her. (She didn’t do anything wrong in reaching her conclusions, but it does give her stance a little less authority).
We didn’t report on this instantly because it seemed entirely possible at the time, given the back-and-forth of the courts on this issue, that the situation could have changed again by that evening, but it’s been over 24 hours now so we have to entertain that this could stand for a while. (@maars)
Obama has stuck to his guns about pushing a repeal through Congress and getting things done right – or as he says it, “in an orderly fashion.” The Pentagon is expected to have completed its “review” by December 1st, so while it’s not really clear what the next step of this theoretical repeal process will be, it could hypothetically progress after that point. Really, no one is feeling all that optimistic, because as you may have noticed, the Senate and House are both about to get a lot more Republican, and pushing anything gay through Congress is going to be a lot harder – maybe impossible. (@sify)
There are still a few Republicans who don’t see social issues or “culture wars” as the priority for their party – like Rudy Giuliani, who says he supports gay rights and that he “didn’t see [DADT] as a big issue in this. The social issues were not in this. So maybe that’s an area where Republicans can ease up a little bit . . .” Our best bet at this point might be crossing our fingers and hoping that more people like him come out of the woodwork somewhere. Until then, we’ll await the Pentagon’s pronouncement of its dubious research and hope really hard. (@pamshouseblend)