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Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

Newly-appointed Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said Trump's decision to bar transgender people from serving in the U.S. military was "based on a military decision. It's not meant to be anything more than that." She also claimed that the Obama-era policy enabling the Pentagon to fund gender transition surgery is "a very expensive and disruptive policy."

When asked what will happen to transgender members of the military currently serving overseas, Sanders couldn't answer, but stated that the DoD and WH will have to work together "as implementation takes place and is done so lawfully."

Live updates:

  • On Sessions criticism: "You can be disappointed in someone and still want them to continue to do their job."
  • Why doesn't Trump fire acting FBI Director McCabe himself rather than asking Sessions to do it? The president is looking forward to having Christopher Wray come in and replace him.
  • Education donation: President Trump is donating his second quarter salary, $100k, to the Department of Education.
  • On being a mom: "To the best of my knowledge, I am the first press secretary who is also a mom... that says less about me than it does this president."
  • Letters to the President: Sanders said she plans to start some briefings by reading a letter or email that is sent to the WH. Today she read one from a 9-year-old.

Go deeper

House passes sweeping election and anti-corruption bill

Photo: Win McNamee via Getty Images

The House voted 220-210Wednesday to pass Democrats' expansive election and anti-corruption bill.

Why it matters: Expanding voting access has been a top priority for Democrats for years, but the House passage of the For the People Act (H.R. 1) comes as states across the country consider legislation to rollback voting access in the aftermath of former President Trump's loss.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

House passes George Floyd Justice in Policing Act

Photo: Stephen Maturen via Getty Images

The House voted 220 to 212 on Wednesday evening to pass a policing bill named for George Floyd, the Black man whose death in Minneapolis last year led to nationwide protests against police brutality and racial injustice.

Why it matters: The legislation overhauls qualified immunity for police officers, bans chokeholds at the federal level, prohibits no-knock warrants in federal drug cases and outlaws racial profiling.

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Senate Republicans plan to exact pain before COVID relief vote

Sen. Ron Johnson. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Republicans are demanding a full, 600-page bill reading — and painful, multi-hour "vote-a-rama" — as Democrats forge ahead with their plan to pass President Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package.

Why it matters: The procedural war is aimed at forcing Democrats to defend several parts the GOP considers unnecessary and partisan. While the process won't substantially impact the final version of the mammoth bill, it'll provide plenty of ammunition for future campaign messaging.