Pelosi: Let transgender troops serve openly
© Greg Nash

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) supports the elimination of rules that ban transgender people from openly serving in the military, her office told the Washington Blade.

“Leader Pelosi believes there is no place for discrimination in the U.S. Armed Forces, including on the basis of gender identity,” spokesperson Drew Hammill told the Blade.


The repeal of the "Don’t ask, don’t tell" policy allowed people to openly serve in the armed services regardless of their sexual orientation, but the ban on transgender service remains in place.

In May, Secretary of Defense Chuck HagelCharles (Chuck) Timothy HagelGOP Senate candidate said Republicans have 'dual loyalties' to Israel White House aide moves to lobbying firm Overnight Defense: US, Russia tensions grow over nuclear arms | Highlights from Esper's Asia trip | Trump strikes neutral tone on Hong Kong protests | General orders ethics review of special forces MORE said that the ban should be “continually reviewed.”

While recent years have brought victories for transgender advocates, as well as increased visibility for transgender people in mass media, the administration has remained relatively quiet on the service ban.

Asked why President Obama — who touted the repeal of "Don’t ask, don’t tell" during the 2012 campaign — has not made an aggressive push for removing the restrictions on transgender people, White House press secretary Josh Earnest said the matter is subject to an "ongoing review."

“Well, I do think that the president’s commitment to equality is one that he has articulated many times. He also believes that commitment to equality makes our country stronger, and he believes that it makes our armed forces stronger. So his commitment to that principle is unwavering,” Earnest said.

“But as it relates to how it is implemented in the armed forces, that's the subject of an ongoing review and I’d refer you to the Department of Defense for a status update on it.”