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Republicans turn their backs on troops to support Trump's bigoted ban

The House condemned Trump’s bigoted ban on transgender troops serving — but nearly every Republican sided against members of the military.

By Dan Desai Martin - March 28, 2019
Donald Trump

Given the choice between siding with American troops or embracing bigotry, the overwhelming majority of House Republicans picked bigotry.

On Thursday afternoon, the House of Representatives voted on a resolution condemning Trump’s bigoted transgender ban. The non-binding resolution passed by a 238-185 margin — and every single “no” vote came from Republicans.

Only five Republicans joined a unified Democratic majority in supporting the transgender Americans who serve with honor in our military.

The resolution officially expressed opposition to banning transgender individuals from serving in the military, a policy instituted by the Trump administration. The Trump administration overturned President Obama’s policy of allowing openly transgender troops to serve, which has been in place since 2016.

The text of the resolution slams the Trump administration for using “flawed scientific and medical assertions” in the bigoted ban.

While it does not carry the force of law, the resolution urges the Defense Department to allow transgender individuals to serve their country.

The resolution “sends a message to all transgender troops, all transgender men, women and children, and all Americans that your government sees you, hears you, and you count,” Rep. Joe Kennedy III (D-MA), lead sponsor of the resolution and chair of the Congressional Transgender Equality Task Force, said in a statement.

Other members of Congress chimed in with their support of transgender individuals who are either already serving or aspiring to serve this country in the military.

“The deeply-rooted discrimination and hatred of the Trump Administration should never form the basis of policy, and anyone willing and able to serve in the military should be allowed to — including our brave transgender brothers and sisters,” Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), a member of the LGBT Equality Caucus, said in a statement.

In prepared remarks for the House floor, Speaker Nancy Pelosi said there is “no moral justification for this ban, which violates every value of our American democracy and betrays our fundamental belief in fairness, dignity and respect.”

The resolution was also hailed by outside organizations fighting for equality for all people. The ACLU called Trump’s ban “discriminatory and unconstitutional,” and nothing more than an “attempt to codify transphobia as policy.”

“Not a single transgender soldier, willing to put their life on the line for our freedoms, should be forced to hide who they are in order to serve this country,” Rep. Jennifer Wexton (D-VA), also a member of the LGBTQ Equality Caucus, said in a statement.

When asked to support the troops — all the troops — Republicans said no. They’d rather stand with Trump on the side of bigotry than with the men and women willing to die for our country.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation. 

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