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REPORT: White House Approves ‘Guidance Policy’ to Ban Transgender Service Members

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Policy Would ‘Phase Out’ Transgender Service Members

The White House has approved policy to ban transgender service members based on President Donald Trump’s tweets last week. Called “A Guidance Policy for Open Transgender Service Phase Out,” it was first reported by The Los Angeles Blade, late Friday night. It is expected to be delivered to Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis (photo) for review.

Trump’s tweets last week announcing a ban on transgender individuals serving openly in the U.S. military was turned into a ‘guidance’ policy for implementation that passed muster with the White House Counsel’s office Friday night,” The Blade reports.

Citing “sources familiar with the planning” The Blade’s Karen Ocamb explains the White House policy “would encourage early retirement, usher out any enlisted personnel after their contract is up, and would fire trans officers up for promotion.”

The Trump administration wants “to get rid of transgender servicemembers as fast as they can,” a source told The Blade.

The White House has not released any statement or publicly confirmed the guidance exists.

NCRM has been told by a source familiar with the White House and Pentagon plans that implementation could take time, and military leaders are opposed to Trump’s ban. 

Some have already spoken out. Admiral Paul Zukunft, the commandant of the Coast Guard, Tuesday said, “I will not turn my back” on a transgender soldier.

“I reached out personally to Lt. Taylor Miller, who was featured on the cover of The Washington Post last week,” Zukunft told the audience earlier this week during his appearance at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, as NCRM reported Friday. “If you read that story, Taylor’s family has disowned her,” he said. “Her family is the United States Coast Guard. And I told Taylor, ’I will not turn my back. We have made an investment in you, and you have made an investment in the Coast Guard, and I will not break faith.” 

LGBT civil rights organizations are expected to file lawsuits as soon as any guidance or policy is announced. Lambda Legal said, “we are ready.”

A new Quinnipiac poll released Thursday found nearly seven out of 10 American voters support transgender military service. 68 percent say transgender soldiers should be allowed to serve in the U.S. armed forces.

Last week, after Trump’s trio of tweets announcing his transgender ban, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff announced there would be no changes until policy from the White House was received. 

There are an estimated 15,000 transgender soldiers serving in the U.S. military. A small group of Republican members of Congress and Vice President Mike Pence, along with leaders of the religious far right and anti-LGBT hate groups, have been pushing for some action against transgender troops for months.

On Friday, Politico reported that President Trump last week unleashed his series of tweets announcing the ban after feeling frustrated that he was being “slow-walked,” and wanted to move forward with his ban.

The administration had no plan in place, but Trump told others they would have to ‘get in gear’ if he announced the ban first, one White House adviser who spoke to Trump said. He also said the announcement would stop the lawyers from arguing with him anymore,” Politico reported.

This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. This story will be updated, and NCRM will likely publish follow-up stories on this news. Stay tuned and refresh for updates.

To comment on this article and other NCRM content, visit our Facebook page.

Image: DOD photo by U.S. Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Dominique A. Pineiro, via Flickr

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‘Oddest’: Legal Experts Mock Trump’s ‘Nutty’ and ‘Doomed to Fail’ Emergency Supreme Court Motion

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It weighs in at 240 pages but legal experts are still mocking Donald Trump’s emergency petition to the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn an 11th Circuit Court ruling and allow the special master to continue to inspect the 103 classified documents retrieved from him Mar-a-Lago home.

“Oddest SCOTUS petition. Very technical and not terribly logical,” observed Andrew Weissmann, an NYU School of Law law professor and former DOJ official who served as the General Counsel for the Federal Bureau of Investigation and as special counsel to then-FBI Director Robert Mueller.

The motion was addressed to Justice Clarence Thomas,  who oversees the 11th Circuit courts. His wife, Ginni Thomas, is an avowed supporter of Trump and his “Big Lie” claims he won the 2020 election.

READ MORE: Trump Asks Supreme Court to Intervene for Him in Classified Documents Case

“SCOTUS should send him packing,” tweets former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance, now an MSNBC/NBC News legal analyst. “No surprise here, this was why he paid former Florida Solicitor General Chris Kise $3 million to sign on, no one else on his team could handle this.”

“Just watch SCOTUS turn Trump down 9-0. (Or 8-1 if Thomas dissents . . . ),” writes retired Harvard professor of law Laurence Tribe. “Will The Donald start calling ‘his’ three justices traitors? Will he say they have a ‘death wish’ as he did with McConnell?”

Weissmann took another hit at Trump’s Lawsuit, declaring it “nutty.”

“Trump argument to SCOTUS: 11th circuit had power to stay Cannon decision BUT it [could] not take the classified docs away from SM Dearie review. Nutty and if he won Dearie wd just say he won’t review the docs bc they are not Trump’s.”

University of Texas School of Law professor of law Steve Vladeck says that while the lawsuit is “not *entirely* laughable,” but he thinks “it’s both (1) doomed to fail; and (2) unlikely to accomplish much even if it succeeds.”

Former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti says, “I would not be surprised if the Supreme Court decides not to hear it.”

 

 

 

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Trump Asks Supreme Court to Intervene for Him in Classified Documents Case

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Donald Trump on Tuesday petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to intervene in his classified documents case, and reverse a ruling from the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals that allowed the U.S. Dept. of Justice access to the more than 100 classified and top secret documents federal agents recovered from his Mar-a-Lago residence and resort.

Trump is asking the nation’s highest court to order a special master to continue to inspect the 103 classified documents, despite the special master emphatically stating the government, not Trump, gets to decide what is classified and what is not, especially when Trump refused to provide a list of what he considered declassified.

The lawsuit, which is a massive 240 pages, mostly made up of other documents including the now infamous FBI photo of the classified documents on the Mar-a-Lago rug, is addressed to “The Honorable Clarence Thomas, Circuit Justice for the Eleventh Circuit,” and refers to the former president as “President Trump.”

The lawsuit also mentions the contents that federal agents took, including “89 empty envelopes,” while not noting they were classified document envelopes.

“As part of the 11th Circuit’s decision, the panel allowed the criminal investigation to use the seized documents, something [Judge] Cannon had previously barred,” The Washington Post notes. “Trump’s filing seeks only to reverse the appeals court’s ruling on the special master’s access to the documents, not the part of the decision concerning the investigation.”

This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. 

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Biden Will Include DeSantis in His Visit to Support Florida Hurricane Victims

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President Joe Biden will travel to Florida Wednesday to support families devastated by Hurricane Ian, and will include the state’s GOP governor, Ron DeSantis, in his trip, the White House announced Tuesday.

Last week, asked if he would meet with DeSantis, a top detractor of the president, Biden told a reporter who asked, “I’ll meet with everybody who’s around. The answer is yes, if he wants to meet.”

“This is not about anything having to do with our disagreements politically, this is about saving people’s lives, homes and businesses,” Biden also said last week.

DeSantis asked President Biden for financial assistance for his state, battered by what experts say is one of the worst hurricanes in U.S. history. DeSantis voted against relief aid for victims of Hurricane Sandy when he served in Congress.

President Biden and the First Lady, Dr. Jill Biden, will travel via Air Force One to Fort Myers, one of the hardest-hit areas of Florida by Hurricane Ian.

READ MORE: Watch: 2024 Presidential Hopeful Ron DeSantis Says ‘Cause for Concern Cause’ With Democrats Moving to Florida

But Fort Myers is also part of Lee County, where officials delayed evacuation orders.

“Lee County, which includes the hard-hit seaside community of Fort Myers Beach, as well as the towns of Fort Myers, Sanibel and Cape Coral, did not issue a mandatory evacuation order for the areas likely to be hardest hit until Tuesday morning, a day after several neighboring counties had ordered their most vulnerable residents to flee,” The New York Times reported. “By then, some residents recalled that they had little time to evacuate.”

“Lee County, which includes the hard-hit seaside community of Fort Myers Beach, as well as the towns of Fort Myers, Sanibel and Cape Coral, did not issue a mandatory evacuation order for the areas likely to be hardest hit until Tuesday morning, a day after several neighboring counties had ordered their most vulnerable residents to flee,” the Times added. “By then, some residents recalled that they had little time to evacuate.”

The St. Louis Post Dispatch blasted the Florida GOP governor, calling his “flip-flop on hurricane relief” a “study in right-wing hypocrisy.”

READ MORE: ‘Premeditated, Fraudulent, and Illegal’: Asylum Seekers Sue DeSantis After Being Sent to Martha’s Vineyard

“DeSantis’ willingness to shelve his usual attacks on the Biden administration to politely request emergency federal aid in the wake of Hurricane Ian is an inspiring example of constructive bipartisanship — as is Biden’s announcement that the government will bear a big part of the expense,” the Dispatch Editorial Board stated. “It’s interesting, though, that DeSantis took exactly the opposite stance a decade ago when he joined other hard-right members of Congress who argued against generous federal recovery aid when Hurricane Sandy ravaged the Northeast.”

Over the weekend DeSantis was blasted by volunteer relief aid workers who were delayed for hours in distributing “food, water, medicine, diapers, and anything else people needed” so Gov. DeSantis could get a photo-op.

 

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