Congress gives up on attempt to make women register for the draft after outcry

A defense spending bill before Congress no longer has a provision for women to register for the military draft. An outcry from lawmakers forced sponsors to remove the selective service provision.


National News

December 9, 2021 - 9:51 AM

A U.S. Army soldier bows her head in prayer at a welcome home ceremony for troops returning from Iraq on Nov. 10, 2011, in Fort Carson, Colorado. Photo by John Moore / Getty Images

WASHINGTON — A bipartisan provision in an annual defense measure that would have required all young Americans to register for the military draft has been cut following a Republican backlash.

Lawmakers tried to include the provision in the $777.9 billion measure, the National Defense Authorization Act of 2022, to require all Americans — including women — ages 18 to 25 to be included for registration with the Selective Service System. 

Even though the provision had the backing of members from both parties like Rep. Chrissy Houlahan, D-Pa., and Michael Waltz, R-Fla., as well as Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, and the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Jack Reed, D-R.I., Republicans moved to strip the measure, arguing that women should not be forced to fight in wars.

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