Pelosi: Banning Transgenders 'Would Undermine Our Military Readiness and Make America Less Strong’

By CNSNews.com Staff | March 29, 2019 | 3:28pm EDT
Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaks on House floor, March 28, 2019. (Screen Capture)

(CNSNews.com) - House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) gave a speech on the House floor on Thursday opposing President Donald Trump’s ban on transgenders in the military, arguing that a military without transgenders would undermine America’s “military readiness” and reduce the strength of our nation.

“There is no military justification for this ban which would undermine our military readiness and make America less strong and safe, and that is according to our own military,” said Pelosi.

Pelosi also said she opposed the ban on transgenders in the military on moral grounds.

“The President's ban, as I said, is cruel and arbitrary, a decision designed to humiliate the transgender Americans who are risking and giving their lives for the United States of America,” she said.

“There is no moral justification for this ban, which violates every value of our American democracy and betrays our fundamental belief in fairness, dignity, and respect,” said Pelosi.

Pelosi called on members to vote in favor of a resolution stating the chamber’s opposition to Trump’s transgender ban that was brought up on the House floor yesterday. The resolution ended up being approved 238 to 185.

Here is the excerpt from Pelosi’s floor speech where she criticizes Trump’s ban on transgenders in the military:

The President's ban, as I said, is cruel and arbitrary, a decision designed to humiliate the transgender Americans who are risking and giving their lives for the United States of America.

There is no moral justification for this ban, which violates every value of our American democracy and betrays our fundamental belief in fairness, dignity, and respect.

There is no medical justification for this ban, which the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, and the American Psychiatric Association all oppose.

And there is no military justification for this ban which would undermine our military readiness and make America less strong and safe, and that is according to our own military.

After the President first unleashed his ban, 56 retired generals and flag officers issued a statement asserting that the ban ‘would cause significant disruptions, deprive the military of mission-critical talent, and compromise the integrity of transgender troops who would be forced to live a lie, as well as non-transgender peers who are forced to choose between reporting their comrades or disobeying policy. As a result,’ they go on to say, ‘the proposed ban would degrade readiness even more than the failed Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy.’

Other military leaders have spoken out to denounce this ban: Former Joint Chief of Staff, Mike Mullen; Army Chief of Staff, General Mark Milley; Commandant of the United States Coast Guard, Karl Schultz; Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Jon Richardson; Commandant of the Marine Corps, General Robert Neller.

Yet the President has chosen to ignore the expertise of these military leaders, making clear that prejudice, not patriotism, drives his decisions.

The President's ban, again, is cruel. No one with the strength and bravery to serve in the U.S. military should be turned away because of who they are.

The House will continue to fight this discriminatory action, which has no place in our country. We will never allow hate and prejudice to dictate our national security. I hope we have a resounding ‘yes’ vote to reject the President's ban today.

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