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Press Release

Congress and the White House Must Keep Anti-Trans Riders Out of Annual Defense Bill

Congressional leaders negotiating the conference FY 2024 National Defense Authorization Act must ensure that the hateful amendments in the House version of the bill that target the transgender community are not included in the final legislation.
(Illustration: Renzo Velez / POGO)

Media Contacts: Danielle Brian, Executive Director of the Project On Government Oversight (POGO), [email protected]; or Caitlin MacNeal, Communications Director at POGO, [email protected]

Congressional leaders negotiating the conference FY 2024 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) must ensure that the hateful amendments in the House version of the bill that target the transgender community are not included in the final legislation.

The House-approved annual defense bill incorporated several anti-trans provisions — including two restricting access to gender affirming health care for service members and their families.

The Project On Government Oversight opposes these measures and any other attacks on the transgender community. Bans like these significantly harm transgender people seeking necessary medical care. There is no situation that would justify supporting a bill that includes policies that target the human rights of any community.

Congress must ensure these harmful measures do not make it into the final defense bill. If they do, President Joe Biden must veto this legislation.

There is no world in which our nation’s leaders should support any legislation with such hateful and dangerous riders.

Any claims that these measures are intended to protect service members are bogus. These provisions in the House NDAA are part of a broad-sweeping attack on the transgender community by some members of the House.

Extremists in Congress have been pushing this dangerous agenda in recent years. This year alone, representatives in the House passed bills targeting transgender students and held a dangerous and ill-informed hearing on gender affirming care. Some members of the House are now looking to annual appropriations bills to advance anti-trans measures.

These hateful attacks have no place in our politics or policy, and POGO will continue to oppose attempts by Congress to restrict care for transgender people and to violate the constitutional rights of the transgender community.

“I’m outraged that attacks on the transgender community have seeped into the annual defense policy process. Not only would these measures harm our transgender friends, family, neighbors, and colleagues, they will also undermine our national security,” said Danielle Brian, executive director of the Project On Government Oversight. “Congressional leaders and President Biden must reject attempts to include hateful anti-trans provisions in the annual defense bill.”