A federal appeals court in New Orleans on Thursday ruled that the all-male military draft system is constitutional, pointing to a 1981 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.
The case, which was argued in March, stemmed from a lawsuit filed by two men with the National Coalition for Men who had challenged the historic male-only draft. They had argued that the 1981 case was outdated and was ruled on when women were not as involved in combat as many are today.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rule that “only the Supreme Court may revise its precedent.”
The mandatory draft ended in 1973, but every male U.S. citizen is still required to register for the draft upon their 18th birthday.
The ruling was upheld despite a federal commission’s report that concluded earlier this year “the time is right to extend Selective Service System registration to include men and women, between the ages of 18 and 26.”
“This is a necessary and fair step, making it possible to draw on the talent of a unified Nation in a time of national emergency,” the final report said.
• This story is based on wire reports.
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