The top legal officers in 18 states and the District of Columbia have asked Congress to pass legislation prohibiting discrimination against transgender service members. Hawaii Attorney General Douglas Chin sent the letter dated Thursday in response to President Donald Trump’s announcement, via Twitter a day earlier, that he would ban transgender people in the military.
The letter asks the chairmen and ranking members of the House and Senate Armed Services committees to reaffirm in legislation that transgender people may not be banned from serving in the military. It urges lawmakers to include transgender protections in the National Defense Authorization Act. Eighteen other attorneys general, who like Chin are all Democrats, also signed the document.
The president’s position would put in place a policy that “violates fundamental constitutional and American values,” the attorneys general said. “The new ban harms our states’ transgender residents and marginalizes an entire group of people based solely on gender identity,” the letter said.
Attorneys general from the following joined Hawaii in signing the letter: California, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia and Washington. – via The AP
“All the Attorney General’s who signed were Democrats.” Anyone shocked by this?
President-elect Donald J. Trump has selected Senator Jeff Sessions, a conservative from Alabama who became a close adviser after endorsing him early in his campaign, to be the attorney general of the United States, according to officials close to the transition.
Mr. Sessions was also under consideration for secretary of defense, creating debate within the Trump transition team over which job he should fill.
Mr. Sessions, a former prosecutor elected to the Senate in 1996, serves on the Judiciary Committee and has opposed immigration reform as well as bipartisan proposals to cut mandatory minimum prison sentences.
While Mr. Sessions is well liked in the Senate, his record as United States attorney in Alabama in the 1980s is very likely to become an issue for Democrats and civil rights groups expected to give it close scrutiny.
While serving as a United States prosecutor in Alabama, Mr. Sessions was nominated in 1986 by President Ronald Reagan for a federal judgeship. But his nomination was rejected by the Republican-controlled Senate Judiciary Committee because of racially charged comments and actions. At that time, he was one of two judicial nominees whose selections were halted by the panel in nearly 50 years.
In testimony before the committee, former colleagues said that Mr. Sessions had referred to the N.A.A.C.P., the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and other civil rights groups as “un-American” and “Communist-inspired.” An African-American federal prosecutor then, Thomas H. Figures, said Mr. Sessions had referred to him as “boy” and testified that Mr. Sessions said the Ku Klux Klan was fine “until I found out they smoked pot.” Mr. Sessions dismissed that remark as a joke.
Sessions in the past Voted YES on constitutional ban of same-sex marriage. Voted NO on adding sexual orientation to definition of hate crimes and has a 0 LGBT rights voting record.
Sessions was the first GOP Senator to openly endorse Donald Trump.