Oval Office

12:18 P.M. EST

THE PRESIDENT:  Well, folks, thank you very much for being here.  I’m about to sign an executive order, but I want to begin by thanking the Vice President for helping this, but also thank Chairman Milley, who has been a great, great help, and then also the soon-to-be Secretary of Defense, who, when we can finish this, will be sworn in in a moment.  And so, don’t say anything to cause him to change his mind, okay? 

But all kidding aside, this is reinstating a position that previous commanders and — as well as the Secretaries have supported.  And what I’m doing is enabling all qualified Americans to serve their country in uniform, and essentially restoring the situation as it existed before, with transgender personnel, if qualified in every other way, can serve their government in the United States military.

So that’s what I’m about to sign.  And I’m going to get a chance, I’m told, a little later on another matter — later this afternoon when I speak to another order — to answer all your questions on a whole range of things.  But I’m going to be going to the swearing-in shortly after this.  Okay?

Thank you, again.

(The executive order is signed.)

THE PRESIDENT:  All right.  Thank you.  

12:20 P.M. EST

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