Monday, December 20, 2010


In spite of, and not because of, President Obama, “Don’t Ask – Don’t Tell!” will end…
by Charlie Leck

There must be reasons why our current president is so inept when it comes to maneuvering legislation through the Congress. Like no president in my life time, he has been unable to find managers among the nation’s Senators and Representatives who will carry his water for him. Most of his campaign promises (including the health care reform with a public option he promised) have made no headway whatsoever in Congress.

This is odd.

Presidents like Bill Clinton and John F. Kennedy, even facing minority controlled legislative bodies, were able to move bills through the House and Senate. So were Ronald Reagan and George Herbert Bush. Lyndon Johnson was an absolute master at it.

Now, in spite of himself, one of President Obama’s campaign promises will, thankfully, be fulfilled. The military’s policy of “don’t ask – don’t tell” will come to an end. Gay and Lesbian members of the military will soon be able to serve openly. No longer will they be forced to live out lies while they serve. Hooray!

Credit for getting the bill through Congress will go to Independent Joe Lieberman (CT) and Republican Susan Collins (ME).

Lieberman is clearly a progressive and Collins is an extremely moderate Republican. They both comes from states that supported the action.

The President was prepared to wait for the next session of Congress – a much more Republican and much more conservative Congress – to take action on this bill. It was difficult to understand his reasoning.

Well, it happened on his watch and he will likely try to take credit for it when the next nominating convention comes around. Astute observers will know that this is not true.


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