Trump administration asks for transgender military ban ruling from Supreme Court in aggressive legal manoeuvre
- The request urges the high court to compound four separate legal challenges to Donald Trump’s transgender ban and singularly rule on the issue
- It’s an unusual move that bypasses the regular federal legal process
The Trump administration has asked the Supreme Court on Friday to promptly allow it to ban transgender people from serving in the US armed forces in an unusual move that bypasses the regular federal legal process.
The request, filed by Solicitor General Noel Francisco, urges the high court to compound four separate legal challenges to US President Donald Trump’s transgender ban and singularly rule on the issue this term.
Trump’s ban is currently not being enforced since all four lawsuits were successful in asking for temporary injunctions.
“The decisions imposing those injunctions are wrong, and they warrant this Court’s immediate review,” Francisco wrote.
Francisco’s request urges the Supreme Court to ignore the regular chain of command, which mandates that the government first challenge the lower court decisions in federal appeal courts.
Trump stunned lawmakers and his own military leaders when he announced the transgender ban in a string of tweets in July 2017.
The president claimed the ban would be “doing the military a great favour,” but statistics and federal judges have ripped that assertion as baseless.
“There is absolutely no support for the claim that the ongoing service of transgender people would have any negative effect on the military at all,” US District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly ruled in a case filed in Washington.
“In fact, there is considerable evidence that it is the discharge and banning of such individuals that would have such effects.”
Transgender advocates have slammed Trump’s ban as bigoted and say it will only harm the military, as it would, if implemented, expunge the more than 10,000 transgender people who currently serve in the armed forces.
“As Americans come together and give thanks for the sacrifices made by our brave service members and their families, the Trump-Pence administration is focused on undermining our military by tripling down on this discriminatory ban,” said Rick Zbur, executive director of Equality California, which brought one of the successful suits against the ban.
“There are thousands of transgender service members bravely serving the nation with distinction. The administration ought to be thanking them for their service – not trying to score political points by purging them from our military.”