Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Congress Is Close to Drafting Our Daughters

Before the Republican Convention, House Speaker Paul Ryan is working up his own policy agenda for Republicans to take up. One of Ryan’s six task forces, entitled Restoring Constitutional Authority, announced its purpose to “Reclaim power ceded to the executive branch.” That’s an excellent goal, and the annual defense bill (known as NDAA) is a great opportunity for Congress to reclaim its power to limit the use of women in the armed forces.

Congress has no more important responsibility than to prevent the compulsory assignment of women to military combat, and there’s no better reason why grassroots Republicans are frustrated with this Republican Congress than its failure to do so. Congress has not held a single hearing on this radical change in policy about women in the military. The failure continued last May when the House Armed Services Committee attached a “draft-our-daughters provision” to the NDAA. Only a procedural maneuver by the House Rules Committee stripped out the provision before the bill passed the full House.

When the Senate Armed Services Committee took up its version of the NDAA, the chairman, John McCain, exercised his prerogative to add a draft-our-daughters provision to the bill. A motion by Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) to strike that provision was defeated when 6 Republican Senators joined the Democrats to support the registration of women for military service. Unlike the House, the Senate often requires unanimous consent for most action, and Democrats refused to allow Mike Lee’s amendment to be considered on the floor. The Senate passed this version of the national defense bill, and now both Houses of Congress must meet to work out the differences, including the draft-our-daughters provision.

Republicans in Congress should obey the Republican Party Platform categorically declares “support military women’s exemption from direct ground combat units” and “reject the use of the military as a platform for social experimentation.”

Listen to the radio commentary here:

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