Monday, December 20, 2010


Paul Waldman at Tapped declares victory prematurely:

Jonathan Bernstein makes an excellent point about the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell:
[T]his issue will now promptly go away, entirely. Oh, we'll have a bit of reporting on implementation, but seriously: does anyone think that Republicans are going to run in 2012 on re-instating DADT? Or, even less plausibly, on re-instating the ban that DADT replaced? Forget it. It's possible to believe that a DADT vote could be used in a GOP primary down the road, but it's utterly implausible to believe that the policy would ever be revived, no matter what happens in the 2012 (or any future cycle) elections.
With the possible exception of John McCain, pretty much every conservative knew they were going to lose this argument eventually. And many of them know they're going to lose the argument on marriage equality, too. As Jon Chait asks, "it was only six years ago that Republicans used the bogeyman of gay marriage to help win a presidential election. Does anybody expect that to happen again?"

Outside of some local issues and races in the South, we've reached a point where The Gay Menace just doesn't have much political potency anymore....

Um, really? Don't tell that to this guy from a state we recently thought was getting much bluer:

Responding to the federal repeal of the military policy banning open gays from serving in the armed forces, a state lawmaker in Virginia plans to fight back with legislation that bars "active homosexuals" from serving in the Virginia National Guard.

Delegate Robert G. Marshall said the Constitution reserves states with the authority to do so and that he'll introduce a bill in the state General Assembly next year that ensures the "the effect of the 1994 federal law banning active homosexuals from America's military forces will apply to the Virginia National Guard."

"With the repeal of 'don't ask, don't tell,' President Obama seeks to pay back his homosexual political supporters," the Prince William County Republican said, echoing a sentiment shared by many of the repeal's most ardent opponents. "This policy will weaken military recruitment and retention, and will increase pressure for a military draft." ...

As I told you a few weeks ago, Marshall is the legislator who's been most instrumental in advancing the agenda of Virginia's judicial-activist attorney general, Ken Cuccinelli -- as one news report noted, the "Virginia Healthcare Freedom Act, which paved the way for Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli's lawsuit against the Obama administration's health care legislation, was Marshall's brainchild," and they've also worked together on culture-war legislation about marriage and immigration. Oh, and Marshall appears to be making serious plans to run for James Webb's Senate seat.

No, I don't think this is going to be an issue in the 2012 presidential campaign -- or at least I don't think it will be in unadulterated form. I think the GOP nominee will find a way to work it into an attack on Obama as a guy who uses foreign policy and the defense of our freedom!!! as areas in which he can score political-correctness points. That's a way to bash DADT opposition without necessarily losing Log Cabin types. (And, yes, some self-hating gay voters will react as hoped by the Republican nominee and vote GOP.)

And then, if there is an all-Republican federal government in 2013, well, all bets are off. I don't see why the un-repeal of DADT would be off the table. Especially if more Marsahll-esque crazies have made it to Congress.

Come on, folks -- these are Republicans we're talking about. They never consider any defeat to be final. They think everything can and should be relitigated endlessly.



Wingers are just going to move on? Yeah, right.

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