President Trump faces fourth lawsuit over trans military ban, this time from California troops
A fourth lawsuit has been filed against President Trump over his ban on transgender people serving in the military.
The lawsuit was filed by Equality California on behalf of a 27-year-old soldier and two trans people who had been hoping to enlist in the military.
Named in the lawsuit is President Trump, who announced the blanket ban by tweet, and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, Navy Secretary Richard V Spencer, acting Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy and acting Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke.
“President Trump has attacked American heroes who have risen above discrimination, hostility and lack of acceptance to serve our country by putting their lives on the line in its defense,” said Rick Zbur, executive director of Equality California in a statement.
This is the fourth lawsuit filed against Trump since the tweets in July.
A previous lawsuit was filed in August by a group of trans troops a service academy midshipman and a teenage ROTC member, who last week asked a district court for an injunction to stop the Trump Administration from bringing in the ban.
Other lawsuits have been filed by the ACLU in Maryland and Lambda Legal as well as Outserve-SLDN in Washington State.
Defence Secretary James Mattis last week said that he would set up a group of experts and wait until they had come to a conclusion on the issue before telling Donald Trump his recommendation.
In the meantime, Mattis has permitted trans people to continue serving their country.
Trump tweeted the ban on transgender troops serving openly in the US military, claiming that he was doing a “great favour” to the military.
He cited costs, saying it would be too expensive to cover transgender health benefits for those serving.
But despite this it will cost the military 114 times more to ban transgender troops than it would to allow them to enlist.
Just weeks after announcing a ban on transgender troops in the US Military and days after white supremacists took to the streets, President Trump’s approval rating hit an all-time low.
Despite the assertion that it would cost the military too much to implement a transgender-inclusive policy, the Department of Defense spent five times more on Viagra in 2014 than it would on care for transgender troops.
Out trans former Navy SEAL Kristin Beck challenged President Trump to tell her to her face that she is “not worthy” after he announced the policy.
She also noted the negligible cost of providing the healthcare to trans troops compared to other military costs.
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According to reports, the Pentagon was unaware that Trump was about to announce the rolling back of the Obama-era change.
It is not the first time Trump has gone out of his way to reverse a decision on LGBT rights made by Obama.
The GOP leader has already scrapped protections for transgender school kids, ceased government opposition to state-level anti-LGBT laws, and sought to slash HIV aid funding.
The decisions sour Trump’s previous claims during his election campaign to be a “friend” of LGBT people.
In a speech directly after the Orlando massacre he had claimed: “Ask yourself, who is really the friend of women and the L-G-B-T community, Donald Trump with his actions, or Hillary Clinton with her words.”
He also won endless praise from gay Republicans for waving a Pride flag on stage, while making no pledges on LGBT rights.