Senators Behind Bipartisan Push That Repealed DADT Now Working to Block Trump Military Transgender Ban
SenatorsÂ Susan Collins (R-ME) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) are teaming up once again to support the military. They have introduced an amendment that would block PresidentÂ Donald Trump from implementing his ban on transgender military service members. The legislation, if passed, would be attached to a all-but-must-pass bill, the annual National Defense Authorization Act, that funds the military.
The amendment would ban the military from discharging transgender troops solely for the reason they are transgender.
â€œAny individual who wants to join our military and meets the standards should be allowed to serve, period. Gender identity should have nothing to do with it,â€ Senator Gillibrand, the ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Personnel, saidÂ in a joint statement Monday.Â â€œI am proud to work with Senator Collins to introduce our bipartisan amendment to protect transgender members of our Armed Forces, and I will always fight for our brave transgender troops who put their lives on the line to protect our country.â€
â€œOur armed forces should welcome the service of any qualified individual who is willing and capable of serving our country,â€ Senator Collins said in the same statement. â€œIf individuals are willing to put on the uniform of our country, be deployed in war zones, and risk their lives for our freedoms, then we should be expressing our gratitude to them, not trying to exclude them from military service.â€
There is a long road ahead.
CNN reports it is “unclear whether the measure will get a vote, as it’s one of scores of proposed amendments to the defense bill.”
And despite some Republicans stating they oppose Trump’s ban, it’s unknown if they will oppose the still unpopular president.
Late last month Trump signed a memo giving Defense Secretary Jim Mattis authority to discharge transgender troops, directing him to use “deployability” as the deciding factor. But the language of the memo is questionable at best. There are several lawsuits filed and planned, which may also block Trump’s goal of banning all transgenderÂ service members.
Family Research Council president Tony Perkins, according to a New York Times article, was behind Trump announcing the ban. He reportedly asked the White House, or the president himself, to implement the ban.
Collins and Gillibrand, their press release states, led the “successful bipartisan effort to repeal militaryâ€™s discriminatory ‘Donâ€™t Ask, Donâ€™t Tell’ policy in 2010.”
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Watch: Merrick Garland Calls Trump’s Bluff, Strikes Back at MAGA World’s False Claims in Mar-a-Lago Raid
Attorney General Merrick Garland in an exceptionally rare public statement told the American people Thursday afternoon that he personally approved the search warrant used to enter Mar-a-Lago and confiscate the 10 to 12 cartons of federal government property, which reportedly included classified documents. He also called Donald Trump’s bluff, announcing he has asked a federal court to unseal the search warrant, which will allow the public to know what laws DOJ believes he has violated.
Noting that Donald Trump made public the raid on Mar-a-Lago and the Dept. of Justice did not, Garland cited “the substantial public interest in this matter,” in announcing his move to have the documents unsealed.
“The department did not make any public statements on the day of the search,” Garland stated. “The former president publicly confirmed the search that evening, as is his right. Copies of both the warrant and the FBI property receipt were provided on the day of the search to the former president’s counsel, who was on site during the search.”
That statement refutes the false claims made by many on the right that FBI agents refused to hand over the search warrant or inventory list.
“The search warrant was authorized by a federal court upon the required finding of probable cause, the property receipt is a document that federal law requires law enforcement agents to leave with the property owner,” he added, making clear that a federal judge did agree there was probably cause to execute a search.
“Faithful adherence to the rule of law is the bedrock principle of the Justice Department and of our democracy. upholding the rule of law means applying the law evenly, without fear or favor, under my watch that is precisely what the Justice Department is doing. All Americans are entitled to the even handed application of the law, to due process of the law and to the presumption of innocence.”
“I personally approved the decision to seek a search warrant in this matter,” Garland announced, which was largely assumed.
Merrick Garland: “First, I personally approved the decision to seek a search warrant in this matter. Second, the department does not take such a decision lightly.” pic.twitter.com/q6h0BbNBrY
— Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) August 11, 2022
Garland also responded to the growing chorus of far right wing extremists, pundits, and even and GOP lawmakers who are attacking DOJ.
“Let me address recent unfounded attacks on the professionalism of the FBI and Justice Department agents and prosecutors. I will not stand by silently when their integrity is unfairly attacked. The men and women of the FBI and the Justice Department are dedicated, patriotic public servants every day. They protect the American people from violent crime, terrorism and other threats to their safety, while safeguarding our civil rights. They do so at great personal sacrifice and risk to themselves. I am honored to work alongside them. This is all I can say right now.”
Watch Live: Attorney General Merrick Garland to Make a Statement This Afternoon
Attorney General Merrick Garland will deliver a statement Thursday afternoon at 2;30 PM ET, the Dept. of Justice has announced.
The subject of his address was not included. A gunman threatened and attacked an FBI Field Office in Ohio earlier Thursday, and the far right and Republicans have been outraged over the execution of a search warrant by the FBI Monday at Mar-a-Lago, which resulted in the confiscation of classified materials and federal government property.
Watch live below.
DOJ website feed:
PBS News feed:
Nearly Half the Country Supports FBI Mar-a-Lago Search – Only Republicans Are Opposed, New Poll Shows
Americans on the right are so outraged the FBI, having probable cause and a federal judge’s signature on a legal and valid search warrant, showed up at Mar-a-Lago Monday to confiscate what we now know were between ten and 12 cartons of federal government property, including classified documents.
Trump supporters upon hearing the news almost immediately began calling for civil war, with right wing media including Fox News and other far right outlets reinforcing those attacks.
But a brand new poll just released finds that, as with most issues, Republicans stand alone in their opposition and outrage.
“Just about half of registered voters approve of the FBI search of Trump’s Florida compound,” reveals Politico’s Morning Consult polling, published Thursday afternoon.
Specifically, 49 percent of registered voters support the raid. 37 percent, slightly more than one-third, oppose it, and 13% don’t know.
But the political breakdown reveals what many would expect.
84% of Democrats support the FBI’s execution of the search warrant on the former president’s home.
47% of independents also support the raid, with just 33% opposed.
But a whopping 72% of Republicans are opposed to the FBI’s actions, and just 15% are in support.
The Morning Consult poll also finds that a “majority of voters believe Trump either ‘definitely’ or ‘probably’ broke the law while he was president.”
That includes 90% of Democrats, 59% of independents, and 24% of Republicans.
We’ve got an exclusive snap poll with Morning Consult that was conducted on Wednesday with some early reaction to the FBI’s search of DONALD TRUMP’s Mar-a-Lago compound. See the findings in today’s Playbook PM: https://t.co/WG3q4dEL7X pic.twitter.com/HS57ErPw9q
— POLITICO Playbook (@playbookdc) August 11, 2022
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