Politics

House Panel Just Approved Proposal To Keep Women Out Of Draft

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Jonah Bennett Contributor
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The House Committee on Rules just removed language from the annual defense bill mandating women register for the draft, angering other legislators who wanted the matter to go to a full floor vote.

In effect, the committee added an amendment forwarded by committee chair GOP Rep. [crscore]Pete Sessions[/crscore], that removes draft language in the House’s version of the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act, The Hill reports.

“I did choose to do this, but it was in essence to save us what I believe is good policy notwithstanding how someone may rate that,” Sessions said, referring to the somewhat unusual procedural move to keep the matter away from a floor vote.

This tactic did not go unnoticed by Democrats.

“The Rules Committee chairman is so concerned about a vote on women’s equality in the military that he has created a provision ‘considered as adopted’ that overturns a measure voted on by the Armed Services Committee, ignores the mandatory scoring requirement, and passes itself, avoiding a separate vote by the full House,” Democratic Rep. [crscore]Adam Smith[/crscore] said in a statement, according to Military Times.

“This is a dead-of-night attempt to take an important issue off the table, and I think people will probably see through this tactic,” Smith said.

The provision to mandate that women sign up for Selective Service just barely passed the House Committee on Armed Services by a vote of 32-30 in April. The provision was first offered by GOP Rep. [crscore]Duncan Hunter[/crscore] to demonstrate the absurdity of allowing women access to all combat roles, but he miscalculated how willing legislators would be to support making women sign up for the draft — though, the provision only passed narrowly.

On the Senate side, GOP Sen. [crscore]John McCain[/crscore], chairman of the Senate Committee on Armed Services, inserted an essentially equivalent amendment to mandate that women sign up for the draft. This amendment cleared the panel without much of a hitch, which means there will be conflict between the House and Senate versions of the NDAA.

GOP Sen. John McCain did not respond to a request for comment from The Daily Caller News Foundation.

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