Sens. Mike Lee (R-UT), James Lankford (R-OK), Steve Daines (R-MT), Roger Wicker (R-MS), Josh Hawley (R-MO), and Marco Rubio (R-FL) yesterday introduced a resolution expressing that the Senate should not pass legislation mandating the registration of women for the Selective Service System.
“Forcing our daughters into the draft creates a burdensome and disproportionately increased risk of injury and fatalities for our nation’s women, as readiness data shows,” said Sen. Lee. “This policy change is rushed and unnecessary in our current time of peace, and unduly harms women more than advancing any notion of equality. While American women should be empowered to serve in our Armed Forces, they should not be forced to fight.”
“Our all-volunteer military is the finest fighting force the world has ever known,” said Sen. Lankford. “Women have shown they are more than capable of fully serving in our Armed Forces, and I commend our brave daughters, sisters, and mothers who serve our nation. There is no reason to add women to the outdated Selective Service System to prepare for a draft. When we have faced national security threats over the past four decades, men and women who love our country have volunteered in massive numbers to protect our nation with great distinction. Women are eligible to serve in any role in our military that they choose, but they should not be compelled to sign up for selective service.”
“Montana has a rich legacy of service that is carried on today by both men and women who voluntarily serve our country,” said Sen. Daines. “We do not need to be forcing our nation’s daughters to enter the draft.”
“Women have heroically served in and alongside America’s fighting forces since our nation’s founding. It’s one thing to allow American women to choose this life, it’s quite another to force it upon our daughters, sisters, and wives,” said Sen. Hawley. “Missourians feel strongly that compelling women to serve is wrong and so do I.”
Earlier this summer, the Senate Armed Services Committee included in the markup of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022 a provision that would require women to register for the draft.
The draft, in its rare instances of use, primarily serves as a pipeline to replace combat forces. However, data from the Marine Corps demonstrates that injury rates in combat roles are significantly higher for women over men. The Ground Combat Element Integrated Task Force found that musculoskeletal injuries were twice as high for women; and research conducted at the Infantry Training Battalion demonstrated an injury rate for enlisted women six times higher than the rate for men.
Additionally, the physical fitness required for combat roles are only achievable for a small percentage of women. Data from Army’s gender-neutral Combat Fitness Test show a fail rate ranging between 65% to 85% for women, compared to 10% to 30% for men.
The full text of the resolution can be found here. An online version of this release can be found here.