Some of My Best Friends Are Immoral

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Sorry I didn’t get to this yesterday, because it certainly caught my eye. Jake Tapper cornered Hillary about Pace’s “homosexuality-is-immoral” comments and this is the best she could do:

“General Pace has clarified his remarks, but let’s not lose sight of the fact that ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ is not working,” she said. “We are being deprived of thousands of patriotic men and women who want to serve their country who are bringing skills into the armed services that we desperately need, like translation skills. And one can argue whether it was a good idea when it was first implemented, but we know have evidence as to the fact that we are in a time of war — when we really need as many people as we can to recruit and retain in an all-volunteer army — we are turning people away or discharging them not because of what they’ve done but because of who they are.”

But is it immoral?

“Well I’m going to leave that to others to conclude,” she said. “I’m very proud of the gays and lesbians I know who perform work that is essential to our country, who want to serve their country and I want make sure they can.”

We had a lively discussion over this in the Swampland Tavern last night, where it was observed that this was a completely unnecessary hedge (“What evangelicals with vote for her anyway? And all the swing voters love ‘Will and Grace,’ they don’t care!”) that plays into her reputation for cynical calibration — even though, most likely, the wiggle room she tried to create for herself was born of being unprepared, not overly coached.

Another Swampizen said “You don’t need a consultant to tell you something is not immoral,” which seemed true enough at the time, but apparently Obama needs a spokesman to say it:

“I think traditionally the Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman has restricted his public comments to military matters,” said Obama, leaving Capitol Hill. “That’s probably a good tradition to follow.”

He turned the conversation to opposition to the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy: “I think the question here is whether somebody is willing to sacrifice for their country.”

Later, an Obama spokesman said the senator, in fact, disagrees with Pace.