The absurdity of the answers Press Secretary Robert Gibbs is forced to deliver in defense of DADT (or rather, the President’s “helplessness” to do anything about the continuation of discharges on his watch), is pathetic. Here is today’s jackassery, via Kerry Eleveld @ The Advocate:
The first questioner Friday lumped President Obama’s failure thus far to address the gay ban into a group of other pledges that the president has changed course on, such as his decision this week not to release the photos of detainee abuse. In other words, some in the mainstream press are starting to view the president’s inaction on “don’t ask, don’t tell” as the reversal of a campaign promise. Gibbs avoided answering the DADT piece of that inquiry by responding more directly to the issue of releasing the photos.
But the second questioner was more direct.
And here’s the exchange from the official transcript, which just landed in my inbox.
Q Well, the President says that releasing the detainee photos poses a danger to our troops, but doesn’t dismissing otherwise qualified soldiers also pose a danger? Is it a question of degree?
MR. GIBBS: No, no. What I talked about in terms of “don’t ask, don’t tell” was the President — the President, as you know, supports changing that because he strongly believes that it does not serve our national interest. He agrees with former members of the Joint Chiefs in that determination.
But unlike photos, the only durable solution to “don’t ask, don’t tell” is through a legislative process, and the President is working with Congress and members of the Joint Chiefs to ensure that that happens.
Q But couldn’t he in the meantime put a moratorium on these discharges until that can be accomplished?
MR. GIBBS: But again, the President has determined that that’s not — that’s not the way to seek any sort of lasting or durable solution to the public policy problem that we have.
Q Then how would you respond to the criticism, though, that dismissing a qualified linguist endangers the troops?
MR. GIBBS: I think I would respond by saying that the President has long believed that the policy doesn’t serve our national interest.
The White House is backed up against the wall and cannot give a reasonable, logical defense to continue a policy that is hurting our military effectiveness. He can stop the discharges right now, while Congress moves in its not-so-deliberate speed on the matter.
This is embarrassing for the “fierce advocate”, but quite frankly it’s irresponsible as commander in chief to act as if he can’t do anything right now.
* Report: Obama can stop the discharge of openly gay and lesbian service members now
* The White House has nowhere to hide from MSM equality questions as Gibbs blows it at presser
* The Obama admin doesn’t know how to respond to the marriage equality dominoes