Democratic House members passed a non-binding resolution opposing the Trump administration’s transgender military ban Thursday while dozens of blue, pink, and white striped transgender pride flags lined the halls of Congressional office buildings.
The Democrats’ effort to strike down the ban happened to coincide with Trans Visibility Week.
The National Center for Transgender Equality delivered transgender pride flags of pastel blue, pink and white stripes to every member of Congress — Democrat and Republican — this week and asked them to display them at their offices.
Dozens of members heeded the call.
This year, there are 159 members of the Congressional LGBT Quality Caucus, the largest ever since the caucus’ founding in 2008. The caucus is co-chaired by eight openly queer House members.
Among them is Rep. Katie Hill (D-Calif.), who showed off a picture of her flag Wednesday.
— Rep. Katie Hill (@RepKatieHill) March 27, 2019
Many members of Congress posted photos of their flags before going to vote for the resolution on the trans military ban.
“I’m proud to join my colleagues to fight against President Trump’s discriminatory ban against transgender service-members,” Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-Texas) tweeted Thursday. “We will never allow hate and prejudice to undermine our military readiness and national security.”
As we recognize #TransVisibilityWeek, I’m proud to join my colleagues to fight against President Trump’s discriminatory ban against transgender service-members. We will never allow hate and prejudice to undermine our military readiness and national security. pic.twitter.com/9oET0I5qV3
— Rep. Veronica Escobar (@RepEscobar) March 28, 2019
Democratic senators joined in on the effort as well, including 2020 presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).
“Discrimination has no place in our society,” the Vermont senator wrote on Twitter Tuesday. “I am proud to display this flag as a symbol of my support for transgender people across the country. We must stand with transgender people in all of our communities.”
Discrimination has no place in our society. I am proud to display this flag as a symbol of my support for transgender people across the country. We must stand with transgender people in all of our communities. pic.twitter.com/W6Esa16vzP
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) March 26, 2019
Dozens more members posted photos of their transgender pride flag displayed on flag poles, hung on their doors, or even wrapping it around themselves.
In divisive times, it's more important than ever to lead by example and treat everyone with dignity and respect. To San Diego's transgender community: I will always fight to ensure you don't face hate, discrimination, or prejudice. You #WontBeErased. #TransVisibilityWeek pic.twitter.com/053sfU7sB4
— Rep. Scott Peters (@RepScottPeters) March 26, 2019
For #TransVisibilityWeek I am honored to show my support for my transgender constituents and transgender people across the country. In Congress, I will do everything I can to make sure transgender people #WontBeErased by violence, fear, and prejudice. pic.twitter.com/fNlbHIsG5u
— Rep. Sean Casten (@RepCasten) March 26, 2019
As a member of the @LGBTEqCaucus, I will do everything to make sure transgender people #WontBeErased by violence, fear, or prejudice. This flag is a symbol of my commitment to preserve the right of every person to dignity & pride. #TransVisibilityWeek pic.twitter.com/LgQngLgYc6
— Rep Ayanna Pressley (@RepPressley) March 27, 2019
As we recognize #TransVisibilityWeek, I’m proud to fly the Transgender Pride Flag in the halls of Congress as a symbol of my support and commitment to ensuring equality for all people across the country. You are seen. You are heard. You #WontBeErased. pic.twitter.com/lZ0UKAzRnh
— Senator Mazie Hirono (@maziehirono) March 27, 2019
It is #TransVisibilityWeek – a critical recognition of the extraordinary, daily courage and dignity of the transgender community. I am committed to fighting for justice and equality for trans individuals – in our classrooms, armed forces, health care systems, and everyday life. pic.twitter.com/cqDGbF4ySo
— Rep. Wasserman Schultz (@RepDWStweets) March 27, 2019
For #TransVisibilityWeek, I’m proud to show my support for transgender Americans in Wisconsin and across the country.
— Rep. Mark Pocan (@repmarkpocan) March 27, 2019
It’s #TransVisibilityWeek & we need to make it crystal clear that there is no place for hate in our country.
— Rep. Jim McGovern (@RepMcGovern) March 28, 2019
— Gerry Connolly (@GerryConnolly) March 27, 2019
To every transgender American: I see you, I hear you, and you #WontBeErased. As a member of the @LGBTEqCaucus, I will do everything I can to fight the hateful ban on transgender patriots in the military and every act of prejudice against the trans community. #TransVisibilityWeek pic.twitter.com/AP0m9JO9QX
— Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (@RepDMP) March 27, 2019
Just cast my vote in strong opposition to President Trump’s discriminatory #TransMilitaryBan. Anyone willing to defend our nation is an American hero. We should be celebrating their service, not banning them based on hatred & discrimination. #TransVisibilityWeek #WontBeErased pic.twitter.com/52sUKAFsX5
— Mark DeSaulnier (@RepDeSaulnier) March 28, 2019
On #TransVisibilityWeek we stand by our fellow transgender Americans and ensure that they are heard & respected. We must keep fighting discrimination, stop the trans military service ban, and pass the Equality Act. pic.twitter.com/RoCYnJBlx1
— Congressman Chris Pappas (@RepChrisPappas) March 28, 2019
I stand in support of my transgender constituents and transgender people across the nation because everyone deserves to live a life safe and free from discrimination. #TransVisibilityWeek pic.twitter.com/ZDD18uAfSY
— Congresswoman Julia Brownley (@RepBrownley) March 28, 2019
Every Democrat in the House of Representatives and five Republicans voted in favor of the House resolution against the trans military ban.
President Trump surprised lawmakers when he tweeted in July of 2017 that the military would no longer allow transgender people to serve in the military. The policy was challenged in federal court, but the Supreme Court allowed the ban to proceed in a 5-4 decision in January.
However, the decision is yet again being challenged in court. That, along with the Democrat-led House, ensures Trump will continue to have to fight if he wants his ban permanently in effect.
IJR has reached out to the National Center for Transgender Equality and the Congressional Transgender Equality Task Force for comment.