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    Trump Now Being Sued by Service Members Over His Transgender Military Ban

    Lawsuit Charges Trump Ban Unconstitutional, Violates Due Process and Equal Protection

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    Five members of the U.S. armed forces are suing President Donald Trump over the ban on transgender service members in the military, which he announced via a series of tweets two weeks ago. In a lawsuit naming Trump, Defense Secretary Mattis, and other heads of the U.S. military, the lawsuit cites the Fifth Amendment and states the ban is unconstitutional.

    "The directive to reinstate a ban on open service by transgender people violates both the Equal Protection component of the Fifth Amendment and the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution," the lawsuit, filed by two LGBT civil rights legal organizations, GLAD and NCLR, reads.

    Reports say the White House has already approved "guidance policy" to implement the ban, and the White House, wrongly citing "military readiness and cohesion," has stated it is dedicated to ensure the ban goes into effect.

    In an online statement the organizations accuse President Trump of "needlessly attacking courageous transgender service members who put their lives on the line for our country. Trump’s efforts to reinstate the ban are already harming service members, who have been blindsided and are scrambling to deal with what this means for their families and their futures—including the loss of job security, retirement benefits, healthcare, and other serious harms."

    "The military itself carefully studied this issue and concluded that there is no reason to bar transgender people from military service," the organizations say. "Since the Department of Defense announced in June 2016 that transgender people can openly serve, thousands of transgender soldiers have come out and are serving openly. Our country is safer and more secure because of their service."

    NEW: Trump Tweeted Transgender Ban Just Hours After FBI Conducted Pre-Dawn Raid on Former Campaign Chief's Home

    The five plaintiffs, who are unnamed, "came out as transgender to their commanding officers in reliance on the Defense Department’s June 2016 announcement that transgender people can now openly serve in the military, and have "collectively have served this nation for decades in various branches of the United States military."

    There are an estimated 15,000 transgender service members actively serving. Contrary to the false claims of the president, at least one Republican member of Congress, and anti-LGBT organizations, the estimated cost of transition-related health care for transgender service members would be, at most, $8.4 million annually. Replacing 15,000 troops would be exponentially more expensive.

    The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, is Doe v. Trump

    There's still time – join the more than 1000 people who have signed our petition: Tell President Trump You Support Our Transgender Service Members and Oppose His New Ban

    RELATED STORIES:

    New Poll: Majority of Americans Support Transgender Military Service

    Calls From Transgender Youth to LGBTQ Suicide Hotline Double After Attacks by Trump and Texas Lawmakers

    Sarah Huckabee Sanders Uses Debunked DADT Claims of 'Military Readiness and Cohesion' to Justify Trump Trans Military Ban

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    Image by Ted Eytan via Flickr and a CC license

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