fast track

Obama’s 17-Month Timeline Over Hospital Visitation? It’s Actually Kind Of Fast

The Obama administration heard about Janice Langbehn’s ordeal with Jackson Memorial Hospital last May. The White House, says HRC legislative director Allison Herwitt, “picked up the phone to say, ‘We are really energized about this issue.’” So energized, reports WaPo, “the issue of hospital visitation languished for months as the White House got pulled deeper into the health-care debate and other pressing issues.” All the while, Lambda Legal, which was representing Langbehn in court, “repeatedly raised the issue with White House officials in telephone calls, private conversations and group meetings.” And then, eleven months later, a memorandum from Obama, which will take six months to implement. This is, actually, an example of Washington moving at a clip.

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  • Mark Cahill

    Obama will give the LGBT Community little bits every once in while. Don’t expect equality or anything of real value.

  • Michael @

    OK, kids, let’s reality-adjust the above with a recap:

    “Janice Langbehn’s ordeal” was poignant reinforcement but not the first time O Inc. was lobbied about hospital visitation.

    As noted in a shallow, and sometimes factually incorrect article in the NY Times yesterday, during the transition period between Obama’s early Nov. 2008, election and being sworn in January 20, 2009, several gay groups met with his transition team about LGBT issues. HRC gave them a list of SEVENTY things BO could do without Congressional approval.

    This was one of them, AND Obama had regularly mentioned it as a part of his marriage/civil unions messaging/answering during his two-year campaign for Prez, so there is NO FUCKING EXCUSE UNDER THE GODDAMN SUN to trace this first to May 2009.

    PS: per the Times, ObamaRahm have SIXTY-FIVE items left on HRC’s To Do list and they don’t even include repeal of DADT and DOMA and passage of ENDA and UAFA.

    The next time anyone gets a request for money from the DNC or ObamaNation, send them a large bottle of Viagra instead.

  • Nicholas

    Is the author being sarcastic or not? Genuine question. I can’t tell. Is it fast or not? Sorry.

  • Peter C. Frank

    Except, of course, that the MOST one can be said of what Obama has done on this issue is brought attention to the inequities LGBTQ couples face.

    I recently blogged about the Memorandum, which most people haven’t read. And there are a few surprises in there, as well. You can read about it at

  • reason

    @Peter C. Frank: Read your blog, HHS has a great deal of power that has been increased substantially by the Patients Protection and Affordable Care Act. When the president request something from a subordinate it is an order. Why would you expect a sitting president to be drafting memos for communication with his staff with legally binding policy that could open the government up to litigation? The paper work and policies that HHS and it’s lawyers draw up will have the legal standing. The government is using the power of its purse to force hospital to adhere to the directive in the same manner that it keeps states in line, which is a method that has been upheld by the courts. Run afoul of the policies, you don’t get paid. Granted nearly all seniors, government employees and a large number of other citizens that’s about to increase by 30 million are using government subsidized health care the premise is do this or go out of business. How is that nothing more than bringing attention to the inequities of GBLT?

  • Phabulous Phoenix (Back From The Black Hole Known As Mesa, Arizona)

    How nice! Hospital visits! Wake me up when gay marriage is legalized and we can’t be robbed of all our earthly belongings like these two guys.

  • Johns

    @Mark Cahill:

    Yeah, you’re right. This has zero real value.

    I’ll take my little bits. May I have another?

  • Dude

    Give Obama a break and stop your whining. He can’t do everything in one big swoop. He has two wars fight and a global economic crisis to contend with – all of which are from the former admin. I highly doubt that our freedoms are at the top of his list. And I praise the visitation rights. When you have a partner in the hospital – you’ll understand.

Comments are closed.