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Fierce Advocate’s Administration Cites DOMA, Denies Immigration Benefits to Gay Married Couple

1:49 am in Uncategorized by Teddy Partridge

"screwed"

"screwed" by uckhet on flickr

The Obama Administration has denied the request of a married couple in San Francisco, ordering the expulsion of one spouse who is the primary caregiver of his legally married husband with AIDS.

Team Obama is incapable of valuing our actual relationships, while making pretty speeches about DOMA’s unconstitutionality.

Bradford Wells, a U.S. citizen, and Anthony John Makk, a citizen of Australia, were married seven years ago in Massachusetts. They have lived together 19 years, mostly in an apartment in the Castro district. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services denied Makk’s application to be considered for permanent residency as a spouse of an American citizen, citing the 1996 law that denies all federal benefits to same-sex couples.

Mr Wells states his case plainly:

“I’m married just like any other married person in this country,” Wells said. “At this point, the government can come in and take my husband and deport him. It’s infuriating. It’s upsetting. I have no power, no right to keep my husband in this country. I love this country, I live here, I pay taxes and I have no right to share my home with the person I married.”

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, a part of Homeland Security, stated they do not find the relationship to be “petitionable:” Read the rest of this entry →

Fierce Advocate’s DoJ Appeals Witt Ruling

12:01 am in LGBT by Teddy Partridge

Hey — American LGBTs? Tired of being smile-fucked by Barack Obama yet?

In a brief filing in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, the U.S. Department of Justice filed the formal documents to announce that it plans to appeal the trial judge’s order in Witt v. U.S. Department of the Air Force.

Great ‘messaging’ from a White House that thinks that word is a synonym for ‘governing’ or ‘policy-making!’

The same week they want the United States Senate to read the Pentagon’s unnecessary report one whole fucking day early so that GOP Senators they won’t lobby can join the President’s Fierce Advocacy for open service by gays and lesbians, they appeal the fucking decision to admit Major Margaret Witt to the United States Air Force immediately:

In October, the Department of Justice also opposed Witt’s request for costs, in part, because “Defendants’ time for noticing an appeal of the Court’s September 24, 2010 decision does not expire until November 23, 2010, and, accordingly, this matter has not been finally resolved in plaintiff’s favor.”

With today’s filing, DOJ stated in a docketing statement required to be filed with the Notice of Appeal that the principal issue to be raised on appeal is:

Whether plaintiff’s discharge pursuant to 10 U.S.C 654 and its implementing regulations was constitutional and whether plaintiff should have been ordered reinstated to the military, subject to meeting applicable requirements respecting qualifications for continued service.

In a statement issued by the White House moments after the filing, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said:

“Today, the Department of Justice filed a notice of appeal in a case involving a legal challenge to the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT) policy, as the Department traditionally does when acts of Congress have been held unconstitutional. This filing in no way diminishes the President’s — and his Administration’s — firm commitment to achieving a legislative repeal of DADT this year. Indeed, it clearly shows why Congress must act to end this misguided policy. In recent weeks, the President and other Administration officials have been working with the Senate to move forward with the passage of the National Defense Authorization Act, including a repeal of DADT, during the lame duck.”

Why is Robert Gibbs still employed, again?

Valerie Jarrett on Lt Dan Choi: “I Share His Frustration”

4:18 pm in Uncategorized by Teddy Partridge

Sidestepping Wolf Blitzer’s question (again!) about whether Don’t-Ask-Don’t-Tell is unconstitutional, and saying that she and the President want Congress to end the law as soon as possible, White House Senior Adviser in Charge of Taking the Heat from Gays Valerie Jarrett said she shares Lt Dan Choi’s frustration over the pace of the repeal in Congress.

Wolf Blitzer missed an opportunity to ask Valerie Jarrett why the president won’t end the investigations and discharges under his stop/loss authority as Commander-in-Chief now that Judge Virginia Phillips ruled DADT unconstitutional. He also let her elide his question about why the president doesn’t say it’s constitutional when she responded that he will end DADT in his term as presidnet.

It’s as if CNN newsanchors are about ten years behind on this issue, which probably suits Valerie Jarrett just fine.

Fierce Advocate Valerie Jarrett Won’t Call DADT Unconstitutional; Dan Choi Schools Her on Role of US Courts

9:02 am in Uncategorized by Teddy Partridge

Valerie Jarrett says the president wants Congress to repeal DADT. But she won’t say the law is unconstitutional.

Following Jarrett’s appearance, Dan Choi reviews what she actually said — that lots of gays understand the convoluted and absurd process the President says he has to go through. Then Dan Choi announces that he doesn’t trust Barack Obama after what he did yesterday on DADT, and won’t vote for the President again.

Who’s the hero today?

Pentagon Issues Lavender Alert: We Can’t Protect You; Your C-in-C is Waffling; Omits Warning to Straight Buddies to STFU

12:34 pm in Uncategorized by Teddy Partridge

The Pentagon, in its continuing bumbling response to federal District Judge Virginia Phillips’s possible overreach, issued a memo directed at gay and lesbian troops currently serving, which essentially said "Be careful, now! Nothing’s really changed."

Citing a ‘legally uncertain environment’ the Pentagon warns troops that speaking up about their sexual orientation (or "lifestyle choice," thanks VaJa!) could still get them in trouble. Since the commander-in-chief, tweeting and MTVing that this policy will end ‘on my watch,’ can’t see his way clear to a legally required Stop/Loss order, troops are caught in a netherworld of non-open service while all around them swirl headlines that DADT is ‘over.’

Whatever "adverse consequences for themselves or others" are envisioned isn’t exactly spelled out, but the Pentagon finally made clear that while JAGs are obeying the court order, and they aren’t accepting re-recruits, they also don’t know any better than anyone else just what the fuck is going on in their own house.

Most worrisome, of course, are straight co-servicemembers who’ve been trusted with the secret, aren’t paying close attention, and just see a blog post in passing that says, "No More DADT!" This is irresponsible. Everyone who writes on this topic, including the Pentagon, should include a straightforward, all caps disclaimer:

NOTHING HAS CHANGED

DO NOT COME OUT AT WORK OR TO YOUR WORK COLLEAGUES

TELL ANYONE WHO KNOWS YOUR SECRET TO STFU

Update: HRC supports the White House continued illegality of not issuing a Stop/Loss in wartime.

President Fierce Advocate’s Justice Department Will Appeal DOMA Ruling

2:09 pm in Uncategorized by Teddy Partridge

The Justice Department announced today that it will appeal the case of Gill v Personnel Management, in which a federal district court had ruled in favor of seven same-sex married couples and three widowed persons, including the widower of a Congressman, that they were entitled to federal benefits due married people. The lower court had found the federal Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional, and Obama’s Justice Department in now appealing that ruling.

From AmericaBlog:

Kind of feels like fierce bigotry. And just wait, I suspect that any moment now we’re going to learn that the Obama administration has filed a motion to stop a federal judge’s order that basically eliminated DADT a few hours ago.

But remember, the Human Rights Campaign says we owe this President our gratitude.

From Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders’ press release:

Today, the Department of Justice filed a notice of appeal in Gill v. Office of Personnel Management, GLAD’s challenge to Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The case was heard in May 2010 by U.S. District Court Judge Joseph L. Tauro, who issued a decision finding DOMA Section 3 unconstitutional on July 8, 2010.

“We fully expected an appeal and are more than ready to meet it head on,” says Mary L. Bonauto, GLAD’s Civil Rights Project Director. “DOMA brings harm to families like our plaintiffs every day, denying married couples and their children basic protections like health insurance, pensions, and Social Security benefits. We are confident in the strength of our case.”

The case is now before the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. The next step will be for the government to file its brief to that court arguing that Judge Tauro’s ruling was wrong. GLAD will then file its brief in opposition to the government, and finally the government will file a reply brief. At that point, the appeal will be scheduled for oral argument. Briefing could be concluded by the spring of 2011 with oral argument to follow by the fall of 2011.

Now we await the Fierce Advocacy of the Department of Justice and the Department of Defense appealing Judge Virginia Phillips’ injunction ordering the military to stop enforcing DADT. This could be a red-letter day for LGBT supporters of the president, as his administration shows its real colors in light of its soaring rhetoric.

Waxman: “People Should be Allowed to Get Married”

5:48 pm in Uncategorized by Teddy Partridge

Congressman Henry Waxman endorsed federal Judge Vaughn Walker’s decision to overturn California’s Proposition 8 and told NBCLA he hopes the Ninth Circuit and the Supreme Court uphold Walker’s decision that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional.

"People should be allowed to get married," he said, " Proposition 8 is an unreasonable and unconstitutional barrier, discriminating against people who are gay."

I hope Representative Waxman has an opportunity to speak with President Obama about his convoluted fierce advocacy for gay and lesbian couples, whose liberty and freedom and equality he supports but whose marriages he opposes. Someone needs to explain to the President that he is the way-wrong side of history here.

President “Fierce Advocate” Spreads His Fierce Advocacy Further

3:52 pm in Uncategorized by Teddy Partridge

Uh, oh — business owners on the Florida coast better be careful. If Barack Obama’s "fierce advocacy" on behalf of LGBT Americans is any model, you all are about to be left behind while the American dream passes you by. We’ve been told by President Fierce Advocate that no one in America fights harder for our rights, while his own Administration slows down DADT repeal, won’t let Congress schedule iENDA for a vote, and seems content to allow DOMA to continue to define our relationships as second-class.

If Obama’s ‘fierce advocacy’ on your behalf is anything like his ‘fierce advocacy’ on ours, I would recommend packing your bags for brighter pastures, or coastlines.

It’s at the very beginning of this NPR story where he speaks the line that, for many in the LGBT community, has the same resonance that "heckuva job, Brownie" came to have about George W Bush’s response to Katrina.

I want every businessperson here is Florida to know that I will be their Fierce Advocate in making sure they are getting the compensation they need to get through what is going to be a difficult season. [my transcript]

It’s a phrase President Obama shouldn’t use unless he wants others, who know better and have heard it longer, to call him on it.

I don’t envy the businesspeople of Florida — this President’s Fierce Advocacy has cost hundreds of military servicemembers their careers since he took office. It’s resulted in continued firings, just for being or looking gay, in the 37 states that have no protections against sexual orientation or gender presentation discrimination. It means all our relationships are still second-class.

Good luck to you on the Florida coast, you’ll need it.

President Fierce Advocate Heckled Over DADT At Boxer Fundraiser

8:37 pm in Uncategorized by Teddy Partridge

Somebody had to pay to get in; it is a fundraiser. When your supporters are heckling you seven months before the election about DADT, a policy you promised to repeal when you were elected in 2008, it doesn’t sound too good.

The headline is "Gay Hecklers Repeatedly Interrupt Obama:"

Obama said he agrees that "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell" needs to be repealed. "When you got an ally like Barbara Boxer and you’ve got an ally like me who are standing for the same thing, then you don’t know exactly why you have to holler because we already hear you," President Obama said to the hecklers.

Aravosis has more:

Video of Obama being interrupted by DADT protesters. Obama told the protesters "we already hear ya." Cute, but not true. Barney Frank has tried to get the White House for one month now to say that it wants DADT repealed this year. Frank has received silence in response. The President very clearly doesn’t hear us. Watch 5:37 into the video, Obama is pissed. This worked folks. His entire speech got disrupted.

Congratulations to GetEqual and their supporters for asking President Fierce Advocate when his fierce advocacy will translate into action.


Updated with video