Supreme Court Gives Trump Victory on Transgender Ban

Military ban will go into effect while court battles continue
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 22, 2019 9:06 AM CST
Supreme Court Allows Military Transgender Ban, for Now
The Supreme Court building stands in Washington.   (AP Photo/J. David Ake)

The Supreme Court delivered a victory to President Trump on Monday, ruling that his ban on transgender military troops can go into effect while the issue is argued in lower courts. The court's five conservative justices—John Roberts, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, and Brett Kavanaugh—voted to lift national injunctions blocking the ban from taking effect, while Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan voted to keep them in place, reports the Washington Post. Trump put the ban in place in July 2017, citing "tremendous medical costs and disruption" on the military. Opponents immediately challenged the ban in lawsuits.

The court's decision, issued without elaboration, means the Pentagon can bar people who have changed their gender from enlisting, reports the AP. The policy also requires recruits to serve as members of their biological gender, unless they began a transition under more lenient polices of the Obama administration. The various legal challenges will now play out in the lower courts, and the final decision might ultimately be delivered by the Supreme Court. If so, Tuesday's 5-4 decision bodes well for the White House. (More transgender stories.)

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