Gay Republican refuses to serve under Trump after transgender ban
A gay Republican has withdrawn his name from contention for a job in the Trump administration, after the much-criticised ban on transgender servicepeople.
John Fluharty, who is the former executive director of the Delaware Republican Party, had been in contention for a senior role at the Department of Homeland Security.
However, after the President announced a ban on transgender people serving in the US military, Mr Fluharty removed his name from contention.
According to Politico, he informed officials in an email that he would be “impossible” to take the job after the announcement.
Mr Fluharty wrote: “I am a strong advocate for diversity, both in the Republican Party and in government.
“The president’s announcement this morning — that he will ban all those who identify as transgender from military service — runs counter to my deeply held beliefs, and it would be impossible for me to commit to serving the administration knowing that I would be working against those values.”
Speaking to the Washington Blade, he added: “The president has squandered an opportunity to strengthen not only our nation’s example to the rest of the world, but he has also squandered his party’s ability to have creditable messengers in the LGBTQ community on issues where there can be agreement such as reform of our public education system, lower taxes, and growing our economy – issues that are important to all families.
“The ban on allowing transgender heroes to continue to serve in the military, and the actions by the Justice Department the following day, have effectively alienated the Republican Party from our community for a generation.”
LGBT Republicans have struggled to deal with the announcement, after months of defending the Trump administration.
Conservative Trump voter Caitlyn Jenner hit out at the President, saying: “For those brave people fighting for our nation, Trump’s early morning tweets must be devastating. I believe every American should be outraged by the disrespect shown to those people wearing our country’s uniform.
“Furthermore, this half-baked idea puts all of our service members in harm’s way. Does President Trump intend to just pull 15,000 people out of every critical position to which they are currently assigned? That would disrupt core military missions around the world and needlessly endanger our troops.
“The Pentagon has been working for years on a policy that will ensure that transgender people can serve openly in the military with the full support of their leadership.
“It has been thoroughly reviewed and vetted by the best military and medical experts in the country. There is absolutely no reason to undo all that work because President Trump decided to send a few tweets this morning.”
“The President must ask himself which side of history he will be on — and reverse his position immediately.”
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Meanwhile, the Log Cabin Republicans hit out at the President they helped elect.
Log Cabin Republicans President Gregory T. Angelo said: “This smacks of politics, pure and simple. The United States military already includes transgender individuals who protect our freedom day in and day out.
“Excommunicating transgender soldiers only weakens our readiness; it doesn’t strengthen it.
“The president’s statement this morning does a disservice to transgender military personnel and reintroduces the same hurtful stereotypes conjured when openly gay men and women were barred from service during the military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell era.
“As an organization that led the charge against that hateful policy, Log Cabin Republicans remains equally committed to standing up for transgender military personnel who put their lives on the line to keep us free.”