This is beyond predictable. “Just dropping by” is not something that just happens at the White House. There really is a sense of flopsweat in the air. At this rate the administration is going to bring in the Netroots to “shoot the breeze” with the big guy to try to save face with a week before the midterms. (The Advocate):
President Barack Obama dropped by a White House meeting Tuesday of pro-repeal advocates who were convened to discuss the prospects of moving “don’t ask don’t tell” repeal before the end of the year.
“The President stopped by to directly convey to the participants his personal commitment on this issue,” said a White House official, speaking on the condition of anonymity.
Yawn. FAIL. Again. This song and dance is really tiring at this point. Metro Weekly’s Chris Geidner:
A person outside the White House familiar with the meeting agenda told Metro Weekly that there were three main points the White House was looking to impress upon attendees: (1) President Obama was pushing for lame-duck Senate action, (2) there would would more meetings up to the vote and (3) executive options are not being looked at right now.
Since the terms of the meeting excluded any discussion of the legal DADT cases in the queue, talk revolved around legislative solutions only. That makes Robert Gibbs’s answer to the legislative question today quite telling.
“The only way we’re going to get something through the Senate is to change the vote count,” Gibbs said. “You’re going to have to get past a promised filibuster in moving to the bill.”
Asked whether the White House was doing any contingency planning for the “very real prospect” that the legislative avenue would fail, Gibbs noted recent steps taken by the Pentagon to limit the number of people who can approve discharges but ultimately failed to outline any alternatives to legislation.
No plan, no fallback plan either. Sound familiar? How many times can Lucy jerk the football away from Charlie Brown? DADT is alive and kicking, and it will be after the election — and in 2011. That means the President and HRC didn’t deliver as promised. That is something no one will forget. The ineptitude and lack of a plan, as well as the gross use of the LGBT community is just plain sad.
BTW, here is the portion of today’s press briefing with Robert Gibbs related to DADT:
Q Is the President expecting repeal legislation on his desk by the end of this year regardless of what happens at the polls next week?
MR. GIBBS: That’s our hope. Again, our desire and our hope and the President’s commitment is that he will work to see this pass. This is — look, we are — we’re approaching the beginning of December, which is when the Pentagon’s study of implementation and of the attitudes of the military will be complete. And the President believes, continues to believe, that this is a law that — the end of this law — that time for the ending of this law has come.
The courts are signaling that. And certainly it’s been his political belief going back — when I met him in 2004, that was his position.
Do you have a — we might have covered it, but go ahead. (Laughter.)
Q No, no. Of course not, of course not. Two quick questions. Any sense of what that report looks like? Has anyone in the White House had a chance to see some of the prelims of that DOD report?
MR. GIBBS: Not to my knowledge. The last time I heard about this, nobody in this building had seen that, no.
Q And in terms of contingency planning, I know this is your favorite subject, but, look, there’s a very real possibility this doesn’t go through. I know you guys want it to, I know that’s the meeting today. But if it doesn’t go through, I mean, is something like stop-loss on the table? Perfectly within the President’s authority, by the way, during a time of war.
MR. GIBBS: I think that — look, you’ve seen steps that have been taken over the past several days at the Pentagon involving service secretaries. You have for — you have a sitting chair of the Joint Chiefs that believes it’s time for this law to end; the President working closely with the Secretary to make that happen.
And our efforts in the short term will be focused on the durable repeal of a law that the President thinks is unjust, and that’s where our focus will be.