Judge Says Trump Is Jumping the Gun on Military Trans Ban

(Bloomberg) -- The U.S. government is "incorrect" in claiming that there are no further impediments to President Donald Trump’s promised ban on transgender Americans serving in the military, a federal judge said.

The administration said on March 8 that it would issue a memorandum implementing the ban next month, citing the government’s U.S. Supreme Court victory that lifted two nationwide injunctions against the policy. A third injunction that wasn’t part of that case was subsequently lifted on March 7. A fourth injunction, however, hasn’t budged.

"The nationwide preliminary injunction issued by this court remains in place," U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly in Washington said in a notice Tuesday. "The fact that the three other nationwide preliminary injunctions which had been in place are now stayed has no impact on the continued effectiveness of this court’s preliminary injunction."

The judge said her ruling would remain in effect until at least March 29, the deadline for plaintiffs to request a rehearing of a dispute they lost before the Supreme Court ruling. The dispute hinges on whether the February 2018 ban crafted by former defense secretary Jim Mattis, which allows some transgender troops to serve "in their biological sex," was technically different from Trump’s initial tweet announcing the policy, which barred all transgender Americans from serving "in any capacity."

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