WASHINGTON — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) slammed a Tuesday ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court that would allow the Trump administration’s ban on transgender military personnel to go into effect.
In a 5-4 decision, the high court blocked injunctions against the ban from going into effect pending the disposition of rulings by lower courts. The administration has appealed a July ruling by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals that upheld a district court ruling that blocked the ban from going into effect.
However, an injunction by a Maryland federal court — barring the ban from being imposed nationwide — is still in effect while the case is being appealed.
.@realDonaldTrump’s ban on trans Americans serving in our nation’s military was purpose-built to humiliate brave men & women seeking to serve their country. Deeply concerning that #SCOTUS is allowing his ban to proceed for now. #ProtectTransTroops https://t.co/PgtEJJVHvX
— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) January 22, 2019
The ACLU also criticized the high court’s ruling.
It’s deeply upsetting that the Supreme Court lifted blocks on the trans military ban that were secured by two lawsuits while federal courts continue to review.
It did NOT lift the nationwide block secured in our case, Stone v. Trump, which is before a court in Maryland.
— ACLU (@ACLU) January 22, 2019
The Department of Defense (DOD) praised the ruling.
“The Department is pleased with the orders issued by the Supreme Court today. We will continue to work with the Department of Justice regarding next steps in the pending lawsuits,” Pentagon spokesperson Lt. Col. Carla Gleason said in a statement.
She added: “As always, we treat all transgender persons with respect and dignity. DoD’s proposed policy is NOT a ban on service by transgender persons. It is critical that DoD be permitted to implement personnel policies that it determines are necessary to ensure the most lethal and combat effective fighting force in the world. DoD’s proposed policy is based on professional military judgment and will ensure that the U.S. Armed Forces remain the most lethal and combat effective fighting force in the world.”
In July 2017 President Donald Trump announced the ban. In doing so he reinstated a policy that had been lifted by former President Barack Obama. The decision was met with outrage by LGBTQ groups and some veterans organizations.