McCain Backs Bill to Block Transgender Troops Ban

BY REBECCA KHEEL
The Hill
Sep. 17, 2017

Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain (R-Ariz.) is backing a bipartisan bill that would block President Trump’s ban on transgender people serving in the military.

“When less than one percent of Americans are volunteering to join the military, we should welcome all those who are willing and able to serve our country,” McCain said in a statement.

“Any member of the military who meets the medical and readiness standards should be allowed to serve — including those who are transgender," he said.

This is the latest show of resistance by McCain, who has frequently been a thorn in Trump's side. Most dramatically, McCain cast the deciding vote in July to kill the Senate's attempt at repealing Obamacare. As a Russia hawk, he's also blasted Trump's attempted rapprochement with Moscow, and as Armed Service chairman, has frequently criticized Trump for requesting lower-than-expected defense spending and taking months to develop an Afghanistan strategy.

McCain, committee ranking member Jack Reed (D-R.I.), committee member Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) introduced the bill as stand-alone legislation on Friday.

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