HRC Blog

Administration Asks Court to Delay DADT Challenge

Last week, the Justice Department filed a motion with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals asking it to delay the briefing schedule in Log Cabin Republicans v. Gates, the lawsuit challenging the Constitutionality of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT). The Justice Department requested that the briefing schedule for the case be suspended following the legislative action to repeal DADT in December and pending implementation of the repeal of DADT by the Defense Department.  Notably, the Justice Department’s motion pledges to provide the Ninth Circuit with a status update on the implementation process within 90 days.

Final repeal of DADT occurs after the President, Defense Secretary and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff certify that policies have been written to implement repeal and compliance with these polices is consistent with military readiness.  Once this happens, the law will be stricken from the United States Code following a 60-day waiting period. 

The Justice Department’s request asks the Ninth Circuit to put the Log Cabin Republican case on hold during this period. Based on the current briefing schedule in Log Cabin Republicans v. Gates, the Justice Department must file their brief defending the constitutionality of DADT by January 24th.  Lawyers for Log Cabin Republicans say they plan to oppose the Justice Department’s request for a delayed briefing schedule.

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