Will The House Even Vote On EDNA And The DADT Repeal This Year? It’s Beginning To Like Like We’ve Been PUNK’D

Three articles today raise concern about prospects for progress on repeal of DADT and passage of ENDA in the House this year wgich is really alarming because time is running out.

The first article talks about how the House is taking a very non-controversial approach to the rest of the session. Via The Hill:

While not exactly sitting, the House has slowed its pace considerably since completing work on healthcare. In three of the past four weeks, the lower chamber has been in session just three days, with members arriving late Tuesday and heading back home by Thursday afternoon after scant debate and legislating.

That is by design, and isn’t likely to change, leadership aides say.

“Everything we’re doing now is with an eye on November,” one Democratic leadership aide said. “The agenda has got to be things we can sell, and that we have time to sell.

In Washington Polit-hack speak, that means LGBT equality issues don’t fall into “things we can sell.”

Next up we have An article from the Washington Post on ENDA, focuses on the fact that the bill provides protections for transgendered workers. There is, of course, the perfunctory hatefulness from the Traditional Values Coalition. Reporters sure love to reprint TVC’s garbage without rebuttal from any organization on our side. But, more ominous is the message from one of the leading Blue Dogs

“I don’t think they should bring it up,” said Rep. Heath Shuler (D-N.C.), the former Washington Redskins quarterback-cum-congressman. “First, let’s get our fiscal house in order.”

Shuler, who serves as chief whip for the Blue Dog Coalition, said moderates have “walked the plank a lot around here on things that never go anywhere in the Senate” and that asking them to vote on a transgender bill in this year’s political climate would be “a mistake.” Asked whether he thought the bill would ever reach the floor, he said, “I can’t imagine that it would.”

Not that we’d expect a right-winger like Shuler to support equality, but his message is consistent with how many members of the Democratic caucus feel right now about most issues. And, Blue Dogs often call the shots on Capitol Hill (with assistance from their pals, Rahm Emanuel and  his butt-boy Jim Messina.)

Then, Chris Johnson has an interview with Speaker Pelosi about the repeal of DADT that is SO less than inspiring:

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters Thursday that she remains uncertain about how lawmakers will address “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” this year, although she said inclusion of repeal as part of defense budget legislation would be an optimal vehicle for passage.

“As you probably are well aware, I have never supported ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,’ and look forward to a time soon when it will no longer be the policy,” she said in response to a Blade inquiry. ”How we get from here to there – we’ll make those determinations as we go forward”

In a nutshell kids Our rights are not sellable, to them. All we were, and continue to be, is a source of money, votes and volunteering and all that gets us is a few crumbs here and there. We are barely a demographic worth exploiting. We are not feared or respected. And THAT is something we MUST become

We need to face facts and stop hanging on threads of promises that aren’t going to happen,  We got punked, fucked over, betrayed, sold a bunch of snake oil, whatever.

Now we need to figure out what to do NEXT?


Will Kohler

Will Kohler is one of America's best known LGBT historians, He is also a a accredited journalist and the owner of Back2Stonewall.com. A longtime gay activist Will fought on the front lines of the AIDS epidemic with ACT-UP and continues fighting today for LGBT acceptance and full equality. Will’s work has been referenced on such notable media venues as BBC News, CNN, MSNBC, The Washington Post, The Daily Wall Street Journal, Hollywood Reporter, and Raw Story. Back2Stonewall has been recently added to the Library of Congress' LGBTQ+ Studies Web Archive. Mr. Kohler is available for comment, interviews and lectures on LGBT History. Contact: Will@Back2Stonewall.com

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