Obama Department of Justice Up to Old Tricks in New Year
(Washington, DC) – Despite the fact that legislation was enacted last month which removed 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' from U.S. statute, the Obama Department of Defense has continued the policy's enforcement and the Obama Department of Justice continues to defend the ban in court. Continuing its strategy of obstruction, the Department of Justice has requested that the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal delay hearing Log Cabin Republicans v. USA indefinitely.
"Passage of the 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Repeal Act of 2010 was an important step toward open service, but until open service is a reality, our legal battle remains necessary," said Log Cabin Republicans Executive Director R. Clarke Cooper. "As long as servicemembers are under threat of discharge and there is no clear timeline for certification, Log Cabin will stand for the constitutional rights of our men and women in uniform."
"The White House and its lawyers at the Department of Justice are once again worlds apart," said Dan Woods, Partner at White and Case, and lead attorney for Log Cabin Republicans v. USA. "Despite the President and Vice President's insistence that this policy should be ended in an expedient manner, the Department of Justice has continued to throw up roadblocks. I reached out to my counterparts at the Department of Justice and offered to accept a stay if the government would agree to immediately end all discharges under 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.' The Obama administration refused, and insists on continuing its enforcement of a policy that has been rejected by Congress, the military, and the American people. We are left with no choice but to continue our challenge to this failed and unconstitutional policy."
Log Cabin Republicans have maintained a three-front strategy against 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell,' lobbying for repeal in Congress, consulting with the Department of Defense, and filing suit in federal court. The case went to trial in July of 2010, and Judge Virginia Phillips ruled on September 9, 2010 that the policy violated the First and Fifth Amendments of the Constitution.