Coast Guard Commandant Paul Zukunft essentially told President Trump that he will not comply with his order to kick transgenders out of the U.S. military. Trump’s tweet last week had laid the groundwork to open discussion on reinstating the ban on transgenders serving in uniform.
Zukunft pledged to “not break faith” with transgender service members who serve under him, according to CNN, and adding that he immediately spoke to all 13 transgender members of the Coast Guard after the tweets had been published.
Zukunft spoke specifically of Lieutenant Taylor Miller, saying, “I told Taylor I will not turn my back. … We have made an investment in you and you have made an investment in the Coast Guard, and I will not break faith.”
A department spokesman explained to CNN that the Coast Guard is part of the Department of Homeland Security but “aligns closely with Department of Defense on accessions and workforce/HR policies and will be working with them on this new policy going forward.”
According to the Pentagon, the U.S. military is still awaiting formal direction from the White House regarding any potential policy changes.
“What you saw in the form of a tweet was representative of any announcement, that doesn’t result in any immediate policy changes for us. We will await formal direction,” said U.S. Navy Captain Jeff Davis to reporters at the Pentagon.
Speaking of Trump’s Wednesday tweets, which according to Davis have been the only directive from the Oval Office, he said, “We are now in the process of waiting for that to be formally articulated to us in a policy memo and we’ll be standing by to make that happen, until then (we) don’t have anything on it.”
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