Trump takes transgender troop ban to top court

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Federal courts have prevented the military from implementing a policy barring some transgender Americans from service. "There is no valid reason to jump the line now and seek U.S. Supreme Court review before the appellate courts have even ruled on the preliminary issues before them". As such, he believes that the case, which is being reviewed in lower courts right now, should be moved to the supreme court. The solicitor general argues that the issue is so important and time-sensitive that the government should be allowed to bypass the federal courts of appeals and go straight to the Supreme Court so that the justices can hear oral argument and issue a decision before the current Supreme Court term ends next June.

So it's rare for the justices to intervene early as the Trump administration has been pressing them to do. One famous past example is when the Nixon administration went to court to try to prohibit the publication of the Pentagon Papers, the secret history of US involvement in the Vietnam War.

In the immigration case, the administration told the high court it should decide the fate of Daca ahead of an appeals ruling because the policy otherwise could be in place until the middle of 2020.

Trump first announced the anti-trans policy on Twitter in 2017, where he said that the military could not be burdened with "the tremendous medical costs and disruption" that transgender people would bring.


The judges said the new policy was essentially the same as the original ban, or was merely a plan to implement the original ban, which they had ruled would likely run afoul of the U.S. Constitution's guarantee of equal protection under the law. The appeals court has since ruled but the administration's request that the court hear the case stands.

"This is simply one more attempt by a reckless Trump administration to push through a discriminatory policy", said Jennifer Levi, director of the transgender rights project for the antidiscrimination group GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders, who represents some of the plaintiffs.

"As Americans come together and give thanks for the sacrifices made by our courageous 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.

Still ongoing in lower courts are the census and climate change cases. It's unclear when it will act on the administration's other requests.

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