Supreme Court decides not to hear challenge to all-male military draft

Washington DC – The Supreme Court announced on Monday it will not hear a challenge to the male-only military draft at this time.

A congressional commission said the draft should be open to men and women ages 18 to 26 (stock image).
A congressional commission said the draft should be open to men and women ages 18 to 26 (stock image).  © 123RF/lightfieldstudios

According to NPR, Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Stephen Breyer, and Brett Kavanaugh released a statement agreeing that times had changed since the male-only draft was established, as women were not allowed to take on combat roles until 2013.

The same year the new law was passed, the National Coalition for Men, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union, filed a lawsuit contesting the male-only draft, arguing that it was unconstitutional.

Nevertheless, the Supreme Court will not be taking up the case because Congress is reportedly already considering changes to the draft.

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Congress created the National Commission on Military, National, and Public Service to study draft eligibility in 2016, and its final report was released in March 2020. They concluded that the draft should be open to men and women ages 18 to 26.

The Senate Armed Services Committee held a hearing on the matter in March 2021, during which the chairman expressed support for admitting women to the draft as part of the next national defense bill.

"At least for now, the Court's longstanding deference to Congress on matters of national defense and military affairs cautions against granting review while Congress actively weighs the issue," the justices said.

Cover photo: 123RF/lightfieldstudios

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