December 1, 2010 | by Kevin Naff
GOP’s naked bigotry

The news today that all 42 Republican senators have agreed to block any legislation in the lame duck session unrelated to extending tax cuts to the mega-rich or funding the government lays bare the GOP’s real motive for opposing repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”: bigotry.

Make no mistake that this latest stall tactic has nothing to do with the party’s interest in aiding the economy. It’s yet another smokescreen designed to take a gay rights issue off the table.

When Republicans opposed to repeal said they wanted to study the issue, President Obama and Defense Secretary Gates gave them the most exhaustive survey to date ­— hundreds of thousands of surveys sent to troops and even their family members. Never mind the issue has been studied to death, with at least 22 such reports issued since the law was enacted in 1993.

Now that the results of this latest study reveal that the overwhelming majority of those most directly impacted by repeal are OK with it, Republicans have switched their approach again. They claim time should be spent on extending tax cuts for their fat-cat donors and little else. One GOP House leader suggested punting the issue to the next Congress. But we all know what that means: No action for at least two years with Republicans in control of the House.

This is folly and blatant pandering to the far right wing that continues to control the party. There is no excuse for failing to do what most Americans want — and what the troops themselves have now endorsed — and repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

With this latest effort at blocking repeal, the GOP leadership is thoroughly unmasked for what it is: extremist, out of touch and deeply homophobic.

Kevin Naff is the editor and a co-owner of the Washington Blade, the nation’s oldest and most acclaimed LGBT news publication, founded in 1969.

6 Comments
  • This is not only about DADT…This is about Republicans running out the clock on ALL Legislation that does not Enrich the Rich.

    THIS is their #1 Priority!

    Email the Senate and tell them that we will vote them out at the next election.

    Email Senate:
    http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

  • Certain people shilly-shallied while the window of opportunity was wide open, and now it has slammed shut.

  • This is hardly news. When was the last time Republicans in either chamber supported an LGBT-rights issue? Although much hand-wringing and blame have been levied against weak-kneed Democrats (and rightly so), they are not bigots–they are just weak. Most Republicans all along have been bigots/homophobes. Even the so-called moderates who are probably not bigots are scared of their future primary challenges (representing the bigoted wing of the party) so we have lost them as well.

  • I’m wrigint my home-state senator, Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) — a self-described socialist — to demand that he filibuster to retaliate against the Republicans’ stalling tactics with one of his own — a filibuster to block extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy until the Republicans agree to allow a vote on DADT. I strongly urge Blade readers to do the same.

  • DAMMIT! the lack of a spellchecker or edit function on this site has forced me to re-submit my comment with correections:

    I’m writing my home-state senator, Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) — a self-described socialist — to demand that he retaliate against the Republicans’ stalling tactics with one of his own — a filibuster to block extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy until the Republicans agree to allow a vote on DADT. I strongly urge Blade readers to do the same.

  • “Tax cuts to the ‘mega-rich’”? Really? At only $200K for a single status filer and $250K for a couple filing jointly? (And setting aside that it is actually a proposal for tax INCREASES!)

    The problem with the Democratic proposal to raise taxes on some — which they will soon fully abandon — is that the dollar threshold is laughingly low and will also severely impact small business owners filing as sole proprietors etc. They should have set the dollar amount at a more realistic figure — say $1 Million (ahem, an actual “Millionaires’ Tax”!) — instead of taking on a clash with the merely barely-upper-middle-class!

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