Obama’s LGBT test: End transgender military ban

By Sarah Wheaton
June 24, 2015

As they prepare for their annual gay pride reception at the White House on Wednesday, LGBT rights groups have one urgent agenda item for President Barack Obama: End the ban on transgender people serving in the military.

LGBT groups credit Obama with presiding over a major expansion of rights for gay, lesbian and bisexual Americans since he took office in 2009, including the end of the military’s Don’t Ask-Don’t Tell policy on gay service members.

But there’s still a fundamental policy that needs attention, LGBT groups say: The country’s single biggest employer of transgender Americans — the U.S. military — can legally discriminate against them, and Obama’s administration can fix that on its own. Ending restrictions on transgender servicemembers is at the top of the shrinking list of executive actions the president can take, they say.

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