Rep. Tim Burchett, R-Tenn., has introduced a proposal that would require biological women who identify as men to register with Selective Service in case the U.S. ever has another military draft.
‘If they want to be treated like men, then they need to do what other men do and register for the Selective Service and get called up like everybody else,’ Burchett told Military.com. ‘This group of people is more protected than any other group, and it’s not right.’
Burchett proposed an amendment to the annual bill that authorizes the Department of Defense’s spending and policy priorities for the next fiscal year that would change the requirements to register for Selective Service by defining ‘male person’ and ‘male citizen of the United States’ to include a ‘transgender person who identifies as male.”
Currently, males are required to register with Selective Service, regardless of how they choose to identify their gender.
‘Selective Service bases the registration requirement on gender assigned at birth and not on gender identity or on gender reassignment,’ the Selective Service website states. ‘Individuals who are born male and changed their gender to female are still required to register.’
However, females — even if they identify as or transitioned to male — are not required to register: ‘Individuals who are born female and changed their gender to male are not required to register,’ the site reads.
Unless lawmakers amend the Military Selective Service Act or pass a separate law addressing gender identity, Selective Service ‘must follow the intent of Congress when it required only males to register — the registration requirement is based on gender at birth,’ according to the website. ‘In the event of a resumption of the draft, individuals born male who have changed their gender to female can file a claim for an exemption from military service if they receive an order to report for examination or induction.’
It’s unclear if Burchett’s amendment will get a vote or receive majority support when the annual defense bill, called the National Defense Authorization Act, comes to the House floor next week.
Transgender people have been able to serve openly in the military under their self-identified gender since the start of the Biden administration, which reversed restrictions put in place by the former Trump administration.
The U.S. has not had a draft for military service since 1973.