Troops suing Trump over transgender ban ask judge to permanently block the directive

Troops suing Trump over transgender ban ask judge to permanently block the directive

Plaintiffs who are suing President Trump over the military’s transgender policy have asked that a federal court permanently halt the Trump administration from enforcing a ban on transgender troops.

The motion for summary judgment, filed Thursday in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, seeks an expedited ruling in Karnoski v. TrumpThe lawsuit was filed last year on behalf of nine individual plaintiffs and groups like the Human Rights Campaign, the Gender Justice League and the American Military Partner Association.

“The policy excluding transgender people from serving openly in the armed forces has never had a rational justification, still doesn’t and never will,” said Peter Perkowski, legal director of OutServe-SLDN which jointly filed the suit with Lambda Legal.

“There is no need for a trial to establish that. This motion asks the Court once and for all to put a permanent stop to a policy so clearly damaging to this nation’s military readiness.”

In July, Trump tweeted that he would ban transgender people from serving in the military in any capacity.

He made good on the tweets in August, signing a presidential memo that prohibits the military from enlisting transgender people and from using funds to pay for gender transition-related surgery. The memo also gave Defense Secretary James Mattis six months to determine what to do with transgender troops who are currently serving.

Four lawsuits have been filed by groups and individuals opposing the ban, which lower court judges placed a halt on while the cases worked their way through the judicial system.

The administration appealed those stays, but federal appeals courts denied their request to delay accepting transgender recruits. The Pentagon on  Jan. 1 began accepting these recruits.

Mattis, meanwhile, is expected to reveal transgender personnel policy recommendations to Trump on Feb. 21.

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