Defense Secretary Jim Mattis late Tuesday announced that transgender troops will be allowed to continue serving in the military pending the results of a study by experts.
Secretary Mattis has temporarily halted the President’s ban as written on transgender service in the military while the issue is studied. Secretary Mattis was given this latitude, but it gives the impression of countermanding an order by the President and it opens up the entire issue once again.
Allowing openly transgender troops who haven’t even had the surgery enlist and serve does affect other military personnel. Paying for their surgery does affect taxpayers and the military. Calling gender fluid people transgenders is a significant cultural change.
Mattis will have the net effect studied.
The announcement follows an order from President Trump — first announced in a tweet — declaring that transgender service members can no longer serve in the military, effectively reversing an Obama administration policy. The order also affects the Department of Homeland Security, which houses the Coast Guard.
It seems the President wants to simply revert to the rules prior to Barack Obama.
A panel will study the issue.
“Once the panel reports its recommendations and following my consultation with the secretary of Homeland Security, I will provide my advice to the president concerning implementation of his policy direction,” Mattis said in the statement. “In the interim, current policy with respect to currently serving members will remain in place.”
The problem with this is it could be viewed as a countermand of an order. The President might not like it.
At the same time, 143 congressmen asked Trump to not follow through on a transgender ban and lawsuits have been initiated to allow transgenders and their accommodations.
This follows Kirsten Gillibrand, Susan Collins and John McCain plotting to stall the transgender ban. They planned to add a transgender amendment to the defense act which is up for renewal. They want to go further and allow transgenders to continue to be admitted into the military.
Also out in the news today, former U.N. ambassador John Bolton says he is no longer allowed in to see the President. He was able to move freely in and out of the White House prior to General Kelly becoming chief of staff.
In fact Mr. Bolton wrote an article for the hill and for National Review Online outlining the need for a U.S. exit from the nuclear deal and a way to do it. That’s the only way he can get the President to see it but does the President get to see these articles?
McMaster will never allow the nuclear deal to be abandoned.
Iran isn’t following the nuclear deal but, just the same, every 90 days McMaster expects the President to sign off that Iran is following through. He’s about to sign off again.
If Trump is no longer in charge and these cabinet-level officials and neverTrumpers in congress are running the show, that is a problem.
We updated this article to reflect the fact it covers transgender people already in the service. We also removed most commentary.