Skip to main content
Find a Lawyer
Please enter a legal issue and/or a location
Begin typing to search, use arrow keys to navigate, use enter to select

Find a Lawyer

More Options

Ninth Cir: Log Cabin Republicans' Claim Moot After DADT Repeal

By Robyn Hagan Cain | Last updated on

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has come out … against further DADT arguments.

In a per curiam opinion, the Ninth Circuit announced today that the Log Cabin Republicans’ seven-year-old challenge to the Bill Clinton-era Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (DADT) policy was moot now that the policy has been repealed.

In determining whether a case has become moot on appeal, an appellate court “review[s] the judgment below in light of the … statute as it now stands, not as it … did” before the district court. Here, the suit became moot when the repeal of the DADT statute, 10 U.S.C. 654, took effect on September 20.

The court noted that if Log Cabin filed suit today seeking a declaration that section 654 is unconstitutional or an injunction against its application (or both), there would be no Article III controversy because there is no section 654. The repeal, in short, gave Log Cabin "everything" its complaint "hoped to achieve."

The Log Cabin Republicans disagree.

"This decision by the Ninth Circuit denies more than 14,000 discharged gay and lesbian servicemembers an important means of obtaining justice for the wrong perpetuated against them under the ban, and leaves open the possibility of future violations of servicemembers' rights," Log Cabin Republicans Executive Director R. Clark Cooper told Advocate.

The "don't ask, don't tell" policy, implemented in 1993, prohibited gays and lesbians from openly serving in the military. Now that the DADT has been repealed, gay and lesbian servicemembers face a new obstacle: securing federal benefits for their spouses. The Defense of Marriage Act, which remains in effect, prohibits the Defense Department from extending benefits to gay couples, even those married in one of the states that recognizes same-sex marriage.

Related Resources:

Was this helpful?

You Don’t Have To Solve This on Your Own – Get a Lawyer’s Help

Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.

Or contact an attorney near you:
Copied to clipboard