Saturday, October 10, 2009

Obama spoke tonight at the Human Rights Campaign dinner in D.C.

The early word from the New York Times:

''I will end 'don't ask-don't tell,''' Obama said at the annual dinner of the Human Rights Campaign, a gay civil rights advocacy group.

He did not give a timetable for the repeal of the law passed by Congress in 1993 and signed by President Bill Clinton, who also promised to repeal the ban on homosexuals in the military but was blunted by opposition in the military and Congress.

''We should not be punishing patriotic Americans who have stepped forward to serve the country,'' Obama said. ''We should be celebrating their willingness to step forward and show such courage ... especially when we are fighting two wars.''

''I appreciate that many of you don't believe progress has come fast enough,'' Obama said. ''Do not doubt the direction we are heading and the destination we will reach.''

Obama also called on Congress to repeal the Defense Of Marriage Act, which limits how state, local and federal bodies can recognize partnerships and determine benefits. He also called for a law to extend benefits to domestic partners.

Now if only the HRC had the backbone to advocate more effectively on our community's behalf.

(Video link)

UPDATE: Andrew Sullivan was not impressed. And more video here.

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