House Approves Amendment To Overturn Transgender Military Ban

​The amendment, part of a larger defense bill, says the military can't consider an applicant's​ sex, gender identity or sexual orientation.
Posted at 10:24 PM, Jul 11, 2019

The House has approved an amendment aimed at overturning the Trump administration policy barring most transgender people from serving in the military.

On Thursday, the House voted 242-187 to approve the amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act. The amendment states the military must only consider applicants based on their ability to meet "gender-neutral occupational standards" and "military occupational specialty," regardless of "race, color, national origin, religion, or sex (including gender identity or sexual orientation)." It also states those same rules should apply to any Defense Department personnel policy for members of the armed forces.

Several LGBTQ and military groups and former officials sent a letter to lawmakers on Tuesday urging them to support the amendment. Democrats are calling it the Truman amendment, since it's modeled after President Harry Truman's 1948 executive order that racially desegregated the military.

The policy, which took effect in April, bans most transgender people from serving in the military unless they agree to serve in the gender assigned to them at birth. The House voted to condemn the rule a couple of weeks prior, though the move was mostly symbolic.

Once the House approves its version of the national defense bill, the two chambers of Congress will meet to work out another version. The Senate approved its own version of the bill last month.