A federal judge yesterday rescinded the last block on Donald Trump’s transgender military ban, paving the way for the military to purge transgender people from its ranks.
U.S. District Judge George Russell in Maryland accepted the Justice Department’s motion to lift his injunction on the ban, citing a recent Supreme Court decision.
The military can now legally remove people from the military who begin their transitions and block transgender people from signing up.
A Justice Department spokesperson said that they are “pleased” with the decision.
“The Department of Defense will be able to implement personnel policies it determined necessary to best defend our nation as litigation continues,” the spokesperson said.
Since Trump announced his plans to ban transgender people from the military in 2017, four courts issued injunctions against the Department of Defense in different challenges to the policy. The injunctions prevented the military from implementing the ban while it worked its way through the court system.
Several weeks later, the Supreme Court issued a stay on two of the other injunctions but didn’t rule on the fourth because the district court judge had yet to rule on it.
Now Russell rescinded the injunction, citing the Supreme Court’s decision in the other two cases.
A spokesperson for the Defense Department said that current policy will remain in place until they issue “further guidance, which will be forthcoming in the near future.”
The ACLU said that it was “deeply disappointed” by the decision.
“We will continue to fight against this discriminatory policy and the Trump administration’s attacks on transgender people,” said ACLU attorney Joshua Block.